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Articles from 2015 In April


CEO Brown Bag Lunch Series: Alan Murray, CEO of GoodBelly

Alan Murray, CEO of NextFoods, is relatively new to the entrepreneurial world. He spent most of his career with large global companies such as Unilever and Tetra Pak before joining NextFoods, the makers of GoodBelly. In fact, he was involved in GoodBelly's very inception in 2008 when he introduced the founders, Steve Demos and Todd Beckman, to the owners of the patented probiotic strain used in GoodBelly products.

To gather new business insights and entrepreneurial wisdom, tune in to Alan Murray's on-demand webinar. You'll learn about: 

  • The science and art of being an entrepreneur at GoodBelly.
  • Identifying opportunity and building credibility.
  • Consumer acquisition and packaging design.

2015 Natural Products Business School: Venture capitalists - the good, the bad and the ugly

From putting together a realistic business plan to buying your first bass fishing boat, Dave Haynes, managing partner at Greenmont Capital, takes you through what you need to know about raising capital for a new natural products business. While you'll certainly experience fundraising highs (did we mention the fishing boat?), pay close attention to Haynes' explanation of "the bad and the ugly" so you are prepared for everything else you might encounter during the fundraising process.

SPINS, NCG announce expanded 10-year partnership

SPINS, NCG announce expanded 10-year partnership

SPINS and the National Co+op Grocers (NCG) are in it for the long haul. The two companies have worked together since 2007 to optimize support of NCG’s retail food co-ops and their 1.3 million consumer-owners, and have just announced an expanded 10-year partnership representative of their mutual commitment to these dedicated stakeholders within the natural products industry.

SPINS will collaborate with and support NCG’s initiatives to develop innovative brands to ensure food co-op shoppers have early access to exciting new products. SPINS is aligned with NCG’s passion to develop incubator brands and will partner with NCG to provide data and insights to help emerging brands that resonate with co-op shoppers' values to jumpstart their growth.

NCG is a business services cooperative owned by more than 140 retail food co-ops working together to serve more people in more communities across the US. With sales topping $1.7 billion, NCG helps independent food co-ops aggregate resources to achieve many of the advantages of a chain—such as collective buying, access to business services and information sharing—while preserving local autonomy.

“NCG represents a diverse group of independent co-op retailers that work together to maximize their success, develop new solutions and make smarter decisions to better meet their shoppers’ needs. Collaboration within our industry is key. SPINS is thrilled to strengthen our relationship with NCG so that together we can further enable co-ops not only to succeed within their own communities—but also to propel the industry forward,” said Tony Olson, CEO of SPINS.

[free guide] The power of greens

RiceBran Tech, Irgovel, CAAL strike supply agreement

RiceBran Tech, Irgovel, CAAL strike supply agreement

RiceBran Technologies (NASDAQ: RIBT and RIBTW), a global leader in the production and marketing of value added products derived from rice bran, announced today that its Brazilian subsidiary Irgovel has entered into an agreement with Cooperativa Agroindustrial de Alegrete Ltda (CAAL), a Brazilian rice growing and milling cooperative located in Alegrete, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, to install RBT's proprietary extruders in CAAL's rice milling facility in exchange for exclusive rights to purchase and stabilize rice bran produced as a by-product of CAAL's rice milling business.

As part of the agreement, Irgovel will install two of RBT's proprietary extruders in CAAL's Alegrete rice mill. In return, CAAL will construct a building for the processing of raw rice bran and storage of the stabilized rice bran. Irgovel will have a right of first refusal to purchase all raw rice bran from CAAL. The construction of the facility and the installation of equipment is expected to be completed within the next 180 days. Upon completion of the project CAAL will begin shipping stabilized rice bran to Irgovel for oil extraction.

W. John Short, CEO and president of RBT, commented: "We are pleased that Irgovel reached this agreement with CAAL. When the project is complete, Irgovel will receive a steady supply of high quality, high oil content stabilized rice bran produced using RBT's proprietary extrusion equipment. This will help to improve oil extraction efficiency at Irgovel and CAAL will be able to sell all of its bran to Irgovel, improving margins and financial performance for its co-op members. We see this arrangement as a win-win scenario for all parties involved and look forward to a long lasting relationship with CAAL."

Microencapsulation spurs vitamin K2 market growth

Microencapsulation spurs vitamin K2 market growth

K2VITAL® DELTA, the double-coated and microencapsulated form of vitamin K2 MK-7, is now stability tested and shown to remain stable in challenging conditions, providing freedom for product formulations. This offers unique possibilities for product development, especially for the growing bone and heart health markets.

A year-long stability test on K2VITAL DELTA has just been completed, confirming that the product remains stable throughout shelf-life even in tough conditions, e.g., when combined with minerals. After 12 months of testing at 25 0C, K2VITAL DELTA lost less than 4 percent of its original activity, and at 40 0C it was 86 percent recovered. The strong stability is due to its double-coated microencapsulated form.

Stability issues are a common challenge for formulations containing non-microencapsulated fat-soluble vitamins, leading to finished products not containing as much vitamin as claimed on the label. K2VITAL DELTA is the only vitamin K2 MK-7 available on the market in a microencapsulated form.

“The proven stability of K2VITAL DELTA provides a unique freedom for product developers when choosing the desired product format and formulations with vitamin K2 MK-7,” says Egil Greve, CEO of Kappa Bioscience AS. “It also means greater cost-effectiveness, as significantly less overage is required to secure the declared content on the label throughout the shelf-life.

Bone and heart health markets get a boost from vitamin K2 MK-7
“K2VITAL® DELTA is the fastest growing variant in our K2VITAL portfolio; its sales volume has grown by over 500 percent since April 2014. This clearly shows the rapid development of the K2 segment and the market need for a stable and pure vitamin K2 MK-7,” continues Greve. “Our estimate is that the vitamin K2 segment will experience a CAGR of approximately 50 percent in retail value over the next five years.”

The most prominent application categories for vitamin K2 at the moment are bone and heart health. The consumer product markets for these are on a clear growth trajectory, aided by several factors, such as population ageing and increasing holistic interest for one’s health. As both of these markets are well-established and even crowded, finding ways to differentiate formulations and reach new target consumer groups is crucial to staying competitive. K2VITAL DELTA offers interesting opportunities to add or create new valuable benefits for consumers.

Vitamin K2 is the link between calcium and vitamin D3, helping to ensure optimal absorption and binding of calcium into the bone matrix. Vitamin D3 increases the uptake of calcium from the intestine and vitamin K2 helps incorporate calcium into the bone structure. These three—calcium, vitamin K2 and vitamin D3—could in fact be called the tri-essentials of bone health. Vitamin K2 also supports a healthy heart by clearing blood vessels from excess calcium.

The missing vitamin
Vitamin K2 is an essential fat-soluble vitamin. Its deficiency in the body can be measured based on ratio and changes in circulating inactive and active forms of the proteins osteocalcin and matrix-GLA. Even a balanced diet does not provide us with enough vitamin K2, and therefore it needs to be supplemented to enable our bodies to function as they should.

K2VITAL
K2VITAL is pure vitamin K2 as menaquinone-7 (MK-7). It is an essential fat-soluble vitamin that directs calcium to the right places in the body. It functions as a cofactor for activating several essential proteins in our bodies. Osteocalcin is one such protein in bones; when activated, it facilitates binding of calcium into the bone matrix. In addition, vitamin K2 also acts as a co-factor for activating matrix-GLA, which helps to clear the excess calcium away from the blood vessels.

Even a balanced diet does not provide us with enough vitamin K2, and therefore it needs to be supplements to enable our bodies to function as they should. Vitamin K2 deficiency in the body can be measured based on ratio and changes in circulating inactive and active forms of osteocalcin and matrix-GLA.

Expert makes case for free curcumin

Expert makes case for free curcumin

At Ingredient Marketplace in Orlando, Fla., Dr. Traj Nibber, director of AOR, presented to a standing room only crowd that all curcumin ingredients are not created equal. Dr. Nibber emphasized the importance of supplement manufacturers to educate themselves on the ingredient efficacy, pedigree of supporting clinical studies, and the importance of obtaining free curcumin to target tissues.

“The big issue with curcumin is the bioavailability and even at high doses it can show contradictory results,” states Dr. Nibber, who has a degree in pharmacy, a masters in toxicology and a PhD in Pathology. Dr. Nibberfounded AOR to clear the misdirection prevalent in the nutraceutical world, and provide people with highly effective, research backed products. “Solid Lipid Curcumin Particle (SLCP™) technology gives curcumin the ability to be stable and reduce metabolization. This allows the curcumin to be taken up through the lymphatic system as opposed to the circular system therefore passing the liver. Because it bypasses the liver and is taken up into the lymphatic system the curcumin then exists as free curcumin and not a glucuronide or metabolized form.”

Curcumin has been highly studied and supplement makers must distinguish research integrity and closely examine the full clinical profile of the ingredients they are choosing to place in their products to ensure the science matches the ingredient. Consumers are reaching out in greater numbers to try to distinguish for themselves the difference amongst the curcumin ingredients offered. With consumer knowledge ever increasing, the retail outlets marketing materials must deliver precise details and clinical substantation.

Longvida® Optimized Curcumin, based on patented SLCP™ Technology from UCLA is a revolutionary ingredient for supporting healthy brain aging. Longvida is the result of over 10 years and hundreds of formulas tested in live bioavailability, efficacy and safety models.

Int'l Aloe Science Council attends IADSA meeting

Int'l Aloe Science Council attends IADSA meeting

The International Aloe Science Council (IASC) participated for the first time in the annual meetings of the International Alliance of Dietary/Food Supplement Associations (IADSA), held April 14 to 16 in Singapore. The IASC was represented at the meetings by IASC executive director Jane Wilson and general counsel Marc Ullman of Ullman, Shapiro & Ullman.

The IASC recently joined IADSA as a means of providing additional support to all IASC members, particularly for those located outside of the United States. The scientific and technical publications available through IADSA are a valuable resource to the aloe vera industry in achieving compliance to various international regulatory schemes. IASC also plans to engage in the regional activities of IADSA where aloe vera is actively cultivated and processed.   

IADSA was originally created in 1998 to bring together the international food supplement sector in Codex Alimentarius discussions. It has since greatly expanded its operations and is now engaging in regional and national regulatory programs in many parts of the world where food supplement regulation is being harmonized or modified.

The Singapore meetings brought together industry groups from five continents as well as regulators from numerous Asian countries. A particular focus of the meetings was the development of appropriate regulations throughout the 10 countries that make up the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). IADSA has been actively engaged in this process and significant progress was reported in establishing a regulatory framework that will allow a wide variety of supplements to be marketed throughout the region. Attendance at the event was the largest ever for an IASDA annual meeting.  

"The IASDA meetings provided a special opportunity to hear directly from regulators regarding the ongoing developments related to ASEAN," noted Wilson. "The information presented will be valuable to IASC member companies in this region as the new regulatory framework is implemented over the next couple of years."