December 31, 2007
In 1984, Canadian food scientist Gilbert Gluck believed in the power of natural compounds for the promotion of health and well being. So that year he founded Cyvex Nutrition to research the latest findings on these ingredients and their potential in the marketplace.
From the beginning, the idea of branding has been essential to the company's long-term success. Charlene Lee, Cyvex's executive vice president and general manager, says, "It all begins with the science story, which begins with primary research into the compound's historical use and laboratory discovery, then with studies of its efficacy and mechanism of action."
Cyvex's research staff, led by Tatiana Anguelova, PhD, produces detailed technical bulletins for its customers, as well as related literature that tells the full scientific story behind each branded ingredient, Lee says.
Branding is not only sensible, she says, but it reflects the distinctive and proprietary nature of the compound from its generic and branded competitors. "Branding makes the choice much easier, and it adds a compelling marketing cache." It forges an immediate response and relationship with consumers, facilitating understanding of the ingredient and how it benefits them.
"Cyvex has sourcing relationships worldwide," Lee says, "and it's our mission to bring in potentially successful raw materials for market, then craft a brand story to help translate the ingredient's health-promotion story."
Cyvex's emphasis lies in boosting overall health and well being, which, Lee says, is why the company is so pro-antioxidant. In the last six months, Cyvex has launched a bevy of new branded ingredients, including BioVin Advanced French red wine-grape extract with five per cent resveratrol, Alfapro alfalfa juice-powder concentrate with at least 50 per cent protein, and Black Currant Extract powder standardized to 25 per cent anthocyanins.
In these days of China recalls and stricter GMP certifications, quality assurance is more important than ever. Cyvex is one of the first suppliers to the dietary-supplements market with its own system, Lee says. "Our NutriPrint quality-assurance protocol has served as a model for others. More important, it has been exceptionally well received among our clients. It includes identity testing of incoming raw materials through FT-NIR, third-party certification by independent laboratories for active ingredients, microbiology, heavy metals, and even pesticide and solvent residue. And we achieved our GMP certification in summer 2007, which now clearly validates our quality assurance every step of the way." GMP certification will make all the difference between quality suppliers and those that aren't, she says.
As for future growth, the only impediment Lee foresees in both the dietary-supplements and functional-foods markets is mass-media sensationalism, which more often than not takes a severely negative approach and spin on the industry. "Until the mass media cleans its house and restores ethics in responsible reporting, it is a constant battle for the trust of the American consumer," she says. "Beyond that we see only a great future. Research continues at all levels, sourcing of new and existing popular ingredients is abundant, and quality in manufacturing technology and innovation continues."
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