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UAS LifeSciences to launch UP4 Adult Cubes at Expo West

UAS LifeSciences to launch UP4 Adult Cubes at Expo West

UAS LifeSciences, will showcase its new chewable adult probiotic, UP4 Adult Cubes, at Natural Products Expo West, March 6 to 8 in Anaheim, Calif.  
“We are very excited to release the hands-down best-tasting probiotic in the business, Adult Cubes. Delicious orange cream taste with an extra zing of vitamin C. This is a companion product to our best-selling Kids Cubes, winner of the NutrAward 2014, Delicious Living’s Supplement Award and Taste for Life’s Essential Supplements Award. Clinically validated strains for immune and digestive support and great taste make Adult Cubes a treat you can take on the go, anywhere.” Ken Seguine, vice president of sales and marketing. 
UP4 Adult Cubes formulation was designed with two clinically studied probiotic strains and vitamin C to promote a healthy immune system and support digestive health and comfort. It boasts a delicious creamy, orange flavor and poppable packaging which makes Adult Cubes both a convenient and tasty way to take your daily probiotic. UP4 Adult Cubes Samples will be available at booth 1720 at Expo West. Consumer sampling will be available through sample boxes coming summer 2015.


MusclePharm enters energy drink category

MusclePharm enters energy drink category

MusclePharm Corp., a scientifically driven, performance-lifestyle sports nutrition company, announced the launch of two new energy drinks, MusclePharm Energy Sport and Energy Sport Zero, both will be previewed at the Arnold Sports Festival March 5 to 8, 2015 in Columbus, Ohio.

MusclePharm Energy Sport will be available in two flavors, Original and Electric Lime, while the MusclePharm Energy Sport Zero will be available in Citrus Edge, Onyx Cherry, and Power Punch.

“Entering the energy drink category aligns with our strategy to serve 100 percent of the sports nutrition segment, fueling sport through superior science-based products,” said Brad Pyatt, CEO of MusclePharm. “Energy Sport and Energy Sport Zero are two new products for MusclePharm that are designed by keeping the everyday athlete in mind.

“Our energy drinks exclusively use the patented and clinically-tested performance ingredient Carnosyn® Beta-Alanine—a breakthrough in muscle science, that delivers a critical advantage for athletes of all types,” Pyatt added.

Both energy drinks will be available to the public on April 1 at select retailers. Further details will be available through

Nestlé goes natural: sweet success or risky business?

Nestlé goes natural: sweet success or risky business?

At first glance, Nestlé’s “natural” move appears a smart one, especially given the attention an increasingly health-conscious society pays to what they’re putting into their bodies. Indeed, half of all US consumers surveyed by Datamonitor Consumer claim to pay a “high” amount of attention to the ingredients used in food and drinks they consume. It is important, however, to consider Nestlé’s move in the context of the confectionery space. The most frequent confectionary consumers in the U.S.—teenagers aged 15 to 17 years old—are also the least attentive to ingredients. With this in mind, could Nestlé’s move have been misguided? The answer to this question is a definite “maybe.”

Taste must remain the priority
While many consumers are making active decisions to opt for natural food and drinks, most are in agreement that the ingredients and nutritional information take a back seat against flavor. According to a recent Datamonitor Consumer survey, 38 percent of American consumers try to choose natural food and drink products “all” or “most of” the time. Though this is a significant proportion, it is clear that “natural” is still not the top priority for the majority. When asked what they consider to be the highest priority, 46 percent agreed “flavor” was number one. Nutritional information (39 percent) and checking of ingredients lists (27 percent) are only secondary considerations. 

“Much of the appeal of candy bars is the novelty and indulgence factor,” says Melanie Felgate, consumer insights analyst for Datamonitor Consumer. “Natural ingredients may be a ‘nice to have’ attribute, but consumers primarily look for sensory appeal. Many associate natural as being more nutritious, but that is less of a priority when indulging in a chocolate bar as a treat. Success for Nestlé will be heavily reliant on there being no discernible difference in the taste or ‘indulgence factor’ of the product. ‘Natural’ alone will not be enough keep existing consumers happy.”

Learning from past mistakes
In the recent past, recipe changes have backfired for other major confectionery brands. Just last month Mondelez International changed the recipe of the UK’s leading Easter confectionery line Cadbury’s Crème Egg so that the outer shell was no longer made with classic Cadbury Dairy Milk chocolate, but instead a “standard” Cadbury milk chocolate. Although the change appeared relatively minor, the move created a stir in the media with loyal consumers disappointed that the classic recipe has changed. 

Another example, which will weigh more heavily on Nestlé’s mind, is that of US confectionery brand NECCO Wafers. In 2011, the brand, like Nestlé, removed artificial colors and flavors to go “all natural.” The resultant uproar among consumers forced the brand to take a backward step and reinstate the original recipe a few months later. Interestingly, many of the complaints regarding Necco Wafer’s reformulation were related to the change in color of the product, rather than just the flavor. The natural colorings did not provide the same vivid colors associated with the original confectionery the consumers knew and loved. Nestlé may face a similar problem when it tries to reformulate the distinctive yellow/orange color inside its Butterfinger bar. According to the brand, it will be replacing Red 40 and Yellow 5 colorings with annatto, a natural color derived from seeds in the fruit of the achiote tree. Will consumers accept the visual change even if the taste remains unchanged? 

Natural may win over consumers in the long-term
Although reformulation has the potential to upset many existing consumers, there are opportunities to appeal to a growing market of natural seeking consumers. “While in the short term Nestlé’s reformulation may generate some negative publicity, in the longer term, a strategy to remove artificial ingredients makes a lot of sense,” explains Felgate.  “As the natural proposition grows in importance, brands which fail to act now will likely lose out in the longer term. Nestlé could enjoy some first-mover advantage.” 

There is evidence that consumers are after healthier indulgences. One such confectionery brand which has capitalized on the natural trend is US-based Unreal Candy, offering natural alternatives to popular confectionery products such as M&Ms and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups.

“Unreal Candy’s whole proposition is built around the fact that natural can still be indulgent,” notes Felgate.  “The strapline used is ‘100 percent real. Unreal taste’ showing that the brand truly understands the importance taste plays above all else.”

It remains to be seen whether Nestlé’s decision to go “natural” will prove popular, but if the brand can alter recipes without compromising on the taste and visual appeal of the originals, it stands a fighting chance of winning over consumers in the long run.

Sustainable Herbs Project supports quality botanicals, ethical sourcing

If you buy products with herbs in them, then the Sustainable Herbs Project concerns you. If you care about the quality of these products and how they are produced, this project concerns you. If you believe that wild and farmed lands and the people who live and work with them should be treated and compensated with deep respect, this project concerns you.

The Sustainable Herbs Project follows medicinal plants through the supply chain. We are creating an interactive documentary and website to educate consumers about the industry through interviews and information about each sector. The goal is to create more awareness of and support for sustainable and fair sourcing and processing in the industry overall.

Help shine a light on these important concerns by supporting the Sustainable Herbs Project.

The Kickstarter campaign has only one day left. Although we have reached our initial goal, we can still use your support! If we reach $65,000, we will be able to include a research/filming trip to China. China is a key and questionable source of so many herbs in the industry and being able to include research and footage from cultivation/collecting sites and processing centers in China will make this project even more comprehensive.

Just $20 will make a difference. Please contribute what you can. Thank you!



FI How-To: What ingredients need to be removed from processed foods?

Processed foods are so convenient - and they're killing us! We asked food scientist Kantha Shelke, Ph.D., from Corvus Blue consultancy, for her insights.

Uncle Matt's infuses turmeric, probiotics into new juices

Uncle Matt's infuses turmeric, probiotics into new juices

Uncle Matt’s Organic, best known for its line of premium organic orange juices, announced the launch of three new organic juices: Orange Turmeric, Orange Coconut and Matcha Lemonade. And for the first time, Uncle Matt’s will be offering probiotics in the Orange Turmeric and Orange Coconut juices, powered by GanedenBC30, which is also used in the leading brand of kombucha. Uncle Matt’s Organic will be sampling these new items at Natural Products Expo West in Booth 2313.

The Organic Orange Turmeric juice contains 500 mg. of turmeric per serving, which is an ideal way to “drink” your daily supplement. Turmeric is known as a health-promoting spice and pairs nicely with Uncle Matt’s organic orange juice. The Orange Turmeric also contains 1 billion living probiotic cells per 8 oz. serving and 120 percent of the RDV for vitamin C.

Uncle Matt’s reduced calorie Orange Coconut also contains GanedenBC30 probiotics and delivers the refreshing taste of orange juice paired with coconut water, all for 70 calories per serving, which is 36 percent less calories than regular orange juice. Uncle Matt’s Orange Coconut also contains B vitamins and boasts natural electrolytes and vitamin C, making it a better choice than flavored coconut water.

“We’re very excited about the launch of these three new flavors to our family of organic, healthy beverages,” says Matt McLean, CEO and Founder of Uncle Matt’s. “Our partnership with Ganeden and their GanedenBC30 probiotic is exciting and gives our customers the ability to support their digestive health and immune system with a probiotic that delivers cultures more effectively than yogurt.”

Uncle Matt’s Organic’s new Matcha Lemonade is made with a blend of organic Matcha green tea and our delicious organic homestyle lemonade. Matcha boasts 10 times the antioxidants of regular green tea and is loaded with catechin EGCG.

“Our Matcha Lemonade is an answer to our customers for a beverage with real perks,” McLean adds. “We believe the Matcha has a myriad of health benefits that make it a great choice to pair with our organic lemonade. It’s truly the perfect pick-me-up with real health benefits.”

Offered in family-friendly BPA-free 59 oz. packaging, Uncle Matt’s new juices are gluten-free and have no added ingredients, flavors, or preservatives. And as with all of Uncle Matt’s products, each is grown and produced without the use of synthetic pesticides, herbicides and fertilizers.


UK organic brands hit Expo West to explore US opportunities

UK organic brands hit Expo West to explore US opportunities

According to the UK-based Soil Association’s new 2015 Organic Market Report, sales of organic products increased in the UK by 4 percent in 2014—the second straight year of growth. To expand that figure even further, the Soil Association and representatives from the UK organic industry are coming to Natural Products Expo West in Anaheim, Calif., to showcase both heritage and innovative brands. After all, the U.S. is the largest market for organic products worldwide with 43 percent of global sales, according to the report.

The significant growth in organic sales came in a year when both UK food prices (down 1.9 percent) and food spending (down 1.1 percent) fell. Dairy, and fresh fruit and vegetables, continued to lead the way, with a hefty increase in organic personal care products and Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS)-certified textiles sales as well.

The mood among organic business in the UK is confident, with an impressive 63 percent predicting growth in 2015, and six out of ten of these businesses (62 percent) anticipating double-digit growth.

According to the Organic Trade Association, sales of organic products in the U.S. grew approximately 11.5 percent from 2012 to 2013. With a market estimated to now be worth more than $35 billion, and organic standard equivalence with the European Union, the U.S. is a key export focus for UK businesses.

“We’re certainly pleased that the UK market is back, but we know UK brands are attracted by even greater growth in the U.S. domestic market,” says Lee Holdstock, trade relations manager at Soil Association Certification Ltd.

Four leading Soil Association-licensed brands will be participating in the British organic showcase at Expo West (booth 2482) including Soil Association’s longest standing licensee and founder brand, Aspall (award winning apple juice, cyders, and vinegars), as well as Yes, the world’s first line of organically certified organic intimate lubricants, Rainforest Food (food supplements) and Therapia (honey skin care). 

Both the Expo’s organizers New Hope and NEXT Trend are predicting growth in the ‘heritage’ trend—great for brands like Aspall, who were founded in 1728, particularly given that traditional ingredients such as cider vinegar as listed as products to watch.

More about the licensees who will be joining Soil Association at Expo-West:

  • The Aspall cyder-making business was established in 1728. The Chevallier family still live and work among Clement’s orchards and today Aspall—the Soil Association first ever licensee—is still run by the eighth generation of the family.
  • Yes creates intimacy products which outshine the category, changing consumer’s world from the inside. It’s taken three years of profound research and creativity to create lubrication which offers exceptional performance without compromising purity.
  • Rainforest Foods manufactures the finest foods in the form of dietary supplements for one fundamental reason: because while relatively few people live near the rainforests, mountains or islands where many superfoods grow, very many people live modern lives where balanced meals at regular intervals are not always possible.
  • Therapi’s story is one of love, luck and inspiration: a love affair with bees; the luck to meet some very talented people who have helped shape their company; and the occasional spark of genius which has helped them to formulate a range of unique organic honey skin care products.



Earth Balance announces responsible palm oil initiative

Today Earth Balance announced its pledge to join conscious natural brands like Dr. Bronner's, Justin's Nut Butter and WhiteWave by sourcing only responsible palm oil by the end of 2015.

“We have two palm oil suppliers -- one in Colombia and one in Indonesia,” said Adriane Little, category director for Earth Balance. “Both are leaders in responsible palm production and work independently to create new standards for palm.”

Smart Balance, Earth Balance’s conventional counterpart, is also included in this initiative.

Palm oil problems

Within the past decade, palm oil has garnered a bad reputation—largely for good reason.

Following the FDA’s 2006 requirement that trans fat be listed on food labels, manufacturers sought a non-hydrogenated vegetable oil that could similarly function in processed foods without a strong correlation to heart disease.

Palm oil was the answer. Highly efficient, relatively affordable and significantly healthier, big food manufacturers and personal care brands readily switched from hydrogenated oils to palm oil. Earth Balance’s products, which range from nondairy spreads to vegan crackers and snacks, use palm oil to offer stability to buttery spreads and baking sticks, and as an emulsifier in peanut butter.

But with skyrocketing demand, palm oil production has had a grave impact on the rainforests of Indonesia and Malaysia, where the majority of palm oil is grown. Palm manufacturers often burn natural forests to clear land for palm oil plantations, wiping out habitats for endangered species and releasing huge carbon emissions. A 2012 study published in the journal Nature Climate Change, for example, predicts that palm oil plantation expansion will contribute to as much as 22 percent of Indonesia’s total CO2 emissions by the year 2020. Plus, social injustices including displacement of indigenous people and lack of fair wages plague conventional palm oil producers.

Beyond RSPO

Sustainable palm oil goes beyond the Roundtable for Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), the largest third-party organization that certifies companies with a recognizable seal. For Earth Balance, this initiative also means playing an integral role in the Palm Oil Innovation Group (POIG), a group of industry representatives, environmental and societal groups, including the World Wildlife Fund, The Rainforest Action Network and Greenpeace that aims to improve RSPO’s standards and practices through a charter.

By collaborating with both POIG and RSPO, Earth Balance hopes standards will be raised for responsibly sourced palm oil. Members of RSPO have recognized that their organization has room to improve its enforcement of sustainability criteria and to resolve human rights issues. The sustainability charter includes palm farmers' commitment to conserve high-carbon stock forests (old forests whose soil contains large amounts of carbon), pay workers fair wages, minimize the use of fertilizers, responsibly manage water and more.

Consumer education

Earth Balance aims not only to transition its entire product line to sustainable palm but also to pave the way for other natural and conventional brands to attain consciously sourced oil on a large scale. “Together, Earth Balance and Boulder Brands are dedicated to leading change and improving lives," said Caroline Hughes, director of corporate communications for Boulder Brands, in a statement. "One way we’re doing this is by focusing on quality ingredients that will help change the way Americans eat.”

The company plans to educate consumers through the responsibility section of its website and, eventually, to achieve palm oil traceability—a tough task because palm oil is typically combined from many farms into one central mill.

"My long-term vision is that we will have some sort of packaging that displays our commitment," Earth Balance's Little said. "Consumer education will be a phased approach that begins with outreach."

NOW debuts new supplement labels, products at Expo West

NOW debuts new supplement labels, products at Expo West

NOW Foods will introduce a number of new product additions to the company’s array of healthy lifestyle products in three category-specific booths at Natural Products Expo West, to be held in Anaheim, Calif., March 6 to 8, as well as unveil new labels for the supplement line and host a book signing with noted natural health expert Dr. Earl Mindell.

At NOW’s newly designed main booth, #1704, new supplements featured will include:

Aloe + Probiotics – High Potency 10,000 mg Aloe Vera per Veg Cap combined with 5 billion probiotic organisms from 10 Probiotic Strains. In small easy-to-swallow veg caps. 

Aloe Vera with Soothing Herbs – High Potency 10,000 mg Aloe Vera per Veg Cap combined with soothing herbs for the digestive system - Marshmallow, Slippery Elm and Organic Ginger Root. Easy to-swallow veg caps. Vegetarian/ Vegan Formula.

Probiotic-10 sticks New Probiotic-10™ Packets have at least 10 billion live organisms consisting of 10 probiotic bacterial strains that are known to colonize the human GI tract. This unique product also includes Inulin; a fructooligosaccharide (FOS) classified as a dietary fiber that’s known to promote the growth of a balanced spectrum of organisms throughout the intestinal tract.* Shelf stable at room temperature.

Organic Pea Protein – NOW® Sports Organic Pea Protein is a non-GMO vegetable protein isolate derived from yellow pea, with 15 grams of easily-digested protein per serving. Pure and natural, unflavored, and mixes easily into beverages.

Energy Extreme – NOW® Sports Energy Extreme is formulated to supply the nutrients needed to promote sustained energy production and mental alertness. With a full complement of B vitamins and other cofactors such as chromium, magnesium malate and carnitine, NOW® Sports Energy Extreme delivers what cells need most to drive energy production.

NOW® Sports Plant Protein Complex is specifically formulated for the active vegetarian or vegan, containing non-GMO protein from pea, brown rice, hemp and quinoa. Each one scoop serving provides 22 grams of protein, with about 3,900 mg branched chain amino acids and 1,800 mg of L-Arginine. Naturally sweetened with BetterStevia® and Xylitol.

The main booth will host a book signing with Dr. Earl Mindell for his book “The Memory Bible” on Friday and Saturday from 1 - 3 p.m. The first 100 people to stop by each day for the book signing will receive a free book.

In NOW’s Food booth, #2767

The Food booth will feature new selections from NOW’s distinct food brands:

NOW Real Food® Organic Farro – With a unique flavor that's earthy and nutty and a firm texture that borders on crunchy, Farro is an exceptional ancient wheat grain ideal for soups and stews and adds welcome textural complexity to salads and other raw dishes. NOW Real Food® Organic Farro is true Farro; a light brown, hearty wheat grain with a deliciously complex taste that lacks the heaviness often found with other whole-wheat grains. Farro is a good source of nutrients including vitamins A, B, C and E, magnesium, fiber and more. 

NOW Real Food® Organic Freekeh – Cracked Freekeh (pronounced freek-ah) is an ancient grain made from green wheat that has been lightly roasted for a unique, slightly smoky and nutty flavor. It has more fiber than almost any other grain and is a natural source of protein, minerals and the phytonutrients lutein and zeaxanthin. It has a low glycemic rating, is suitable for vegetarians, and its high fiber content promotes satiety.   Freekeh is extremely versatile wheat grain and is often used in place of barley, rice and quinoa. 

Ellyndale Foods™ is NOW’s new foodie line of unique, flavorful products. It’s a unique collection of great-tasting foods with a focus on premium ingredients, innovative flavors, and superior packaging. These high-quality products are always natural or organic, non-GMO, and produced in small batches. The first products to debut under the Ellyndale label are premium cooking and salad oils. These superior oils have been carefully selected and processed to maintain the natural flavors and health properties of the oil with a pure, unparalleled taste. These versatile oils are perfect for cooking, baking, frying, sautéing, or just drizzled over a salad. They are packaged in high quality dark green glass bottles to protect the oil from light and oxidation.  Oils in this line include:

Almond Oil, Avocado Oil, Organic Canola Oil, Organic Virgin Coconut Oil, Macadamia Oil, Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Rice Bran Oil and Organic Sunflower Oil.

Ellyndale Organics™ Coconut Infusions – Coconut Oil is a popular cooking oil due to its versatility, high smoke point and myriad health benefits. And now we've fused the rich taste of coconut with bold, inspiring flavors to create Ellyndale Organics Coconut Oil Infusions. They're perfect for adding a little zest to dishes and snacks or used as a delightful spread. Available in Garlic and Butter flavors.

Living Now is NOW’s remarkable line of gluten-free, allergy friendly mixes, flours, grains, and pastas. These are all carefully produced in a dedicated allergy-friendly facility and are certified gluten-free. All Living Now products are made without the eight common allergens including wheat, soy, dairy, eggs, nuts, peanuts, fish and shellfish.

Organic Quinoa Pasta – Living Now’s new gluten-free pasta is made with just three simple ingredients: Organic Quinoa, Amaranth, and Rice. With a taste and texture remarkably close to traditional pasta, it’s perfect for anyone looking to avoid wheat, corn or other allergens.

In the NOW Solutions personal care booth, #3617, featured new products include:

Chest Rub Relief – This invigorating formula combines soothing natural oils such as Coconut, Sunflower, and Tea Tree with refreshing menthol and camphor aroma for breathing comfort and well-being.

NOW® Solutions Faux Wood Ultrasonic Oil Diffuser -- Unites scientific innovation with contemporary design to create an essential oil diffuser that's the perfect complement to home or office. This attractive, flower-shaped diffuser is BPA-free and utilizes high-frequency ultrasonic electrical vibrations to create an ultra-fine aromatherapy mist. This diffusion method doesn't utilize heat, which maintains essential oil integrity and holistic properties. NOW® Solutions Faux Wood Grain Ultrasonic Oil Diffuser is perfect for daily use and is a healthy alternative to synthetic room fresheners and scented candles.



Nitrosigine named 2015 NutrAward finalist

Nitrosigine named 2015 NutrAward finalist

Nutrition 21 is proud to announce that Nitrosigine® has been selected as a finalist for best new Functional Ingredient in the 2015 NutrAward, which will be presented on March 5 during National Products Expo West in Anaheim, Calif. Finalists were selected based on scientific merit, efficacy, market potential, safety, innovation, and ability to increase market credibility. 

  • Nitrosigine is a patented ingredient of bonded arginine silicate with FDA New Dietary Ingredient notification status; now affirmed as GRAS.
  • Nitrosigine has been clinically shown to significantly boost nitric oxide (NO) levels. Nitric oxide is a key factor in increasing blood flow to working muscles.
  • Nitrosigine is engineered to take effect in just 30 minutes, producing increased arginine levels that can last through an entire workout, for up to three hours—after just a single dose!
  • With continued use, nitric oxide levels build over time. Increased NO levels can lead to even better blood flow and vessel flexibility.

Vote for Nitrosigine in the Functional Ingredient category!

To review the Nitrosigine award submission packet and vote, please click here.