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Natural Business Communications Merges with Conscious Media Inc.,

BROOMFIELD, Colo. (Sept. 16, 2002) – Natural Business Communications, the publisher of the groundbreaking business magazine, the Natural Business LOHAS Journal, has merged with multimedia company Conscious Media Inc. Terms of the deal were undisclosed.

Additionally, the company announced that it was relaunching the LOHAS Journal, effective with its Fall 2002 issue, which will reach readers in mid-October. The publication will feature a new look, improved graphic and editorial content as well as a refocused, executive-level circulation. It will debut at the Natural Products Expo in Washington, D.C., October 3 – 6.

Natural Business Communications, founded in 1996 by Steven Hoffman and Frank Lampe, launched the Natural Business LOHAS Journal in March 2000. The magazine tracks the $230-billion “Lifestyles of Health and Sustainability” or LOHAS market. The company publishes the LOHAS Journal Weekly electronic news service and produces the annual Natural Business Market Trends Conference, now in its seventh year. Natural Business Communications also recently partnered with the Natural Marketing Institute to produce the seminal market research study, Understanding the LOHAS Market: Identifying the LOHAS Consumer & Business and Branding Opportunities.

Conscious Media Inc., based in Broomfield, Colo., is an independent, privately held multimedia company dedicated to furthering the growth of the LOHAS market and to educating and informing both businesses and consumers about the importance of health and sustainability. Conscious Media currently has four operating units: Visual Media, Publishing and Research, Electronic Media, and Conferences and Events. Natural Business Communications will function as a division of Conscious Media Inc.

In their roles with Conscious Media, Hoffman currently serves as the publisher of the Natural Business LOHAS Journal and is the director of the Conferences and Events division; Lampe is the editorial director for the Publishing and Research business unit. All Natural Business staff members have joined Conscious Media. Contact information for Natural Business Communications will remain the same.

“We are now uniquely poised and have access to greater resources to help LOHAS businesses grow and prosper in this marketplace,” commented Lampe.

“Through our products and services, we are dedicated to helping build better lives, more socially responsible business practices and a more sustainable world. And now, working with Natural Business Communications, we are better positioned to serve business owners and executives that are pioneering the growth of the LOHAS market,” said Brad Warkins, president of Conscious Media.

More than 63 million Americans—or 30 percent of the U.S. adult population—are LOHAS Consumers*—health- and environmentally conscious, values-based consumers who are defining the LOHAS market by driving double-digit growth in natural and organic products, complementary medicine, personal development, socially responsible investing, alternative transportation, renewable energy, green building, recycling and other sustainable products and services.

For more information, contact Steven Hoffman, 303.222.8967, [email protected]; Frank Lampe, 303.222.8964, [email protected]; or visit www.LOHASJournal.com.

* Source: Understanding the LOHAS Market: Identifying the LOHAS Consumer and Business & Branding Opportunities, Natural Business Communications and the Natural Marketing Institute, © 2002.

U.S. Nutraceuticals Appoints New Vice President, International

Eustis, FL / 9-16-02 – Florida-based U.S. Nutraceuticals LLC, the leading manufacturer of high quality supercritical-fluid extracts for the dietary supplement, nutraceutical and functional food industries, has appointed Larry L. Line to the position of vice president, international.

Prior to this appointment, Mr. Line was president of La Haye Laboratories, Inc., a Redmond, Washington company that recently sold its astaxanthin business to U. S. Nutraceuticals. “Larry brings a wealth of senior level management experience to this position from both the nutraceutical and medical industries,” stated U.S. Nutraceuticals president Tony Evans, Ph.D. Line will assist the company with development of its newly acquired astaxanthin business in addition to other international marketing responsibilities.

Mr. Line is a veteran of both the nutraceutical and medical industries with extensive senior level management experience in the areas of international business development, marketing and clinical research chemistry.

Larry L. Line can be reached at 352-357-2004 or by email at [email protected]

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Ephedra Industry Backs California’s ‘Common Sense’ Approach to Consumer Protection

Revised Bill Includes Strict Warning Label Provisions, Ban on Sales to Minors

WASHINGTON (September 16, 2002) – As a result of sensible amendments, the Ephedra Education Council has announced it now supports a revised California consumer protection bill on Ephedra dietary supplements, SB 1884. It says the new measure currently reflects a “common sense” approach, including strict warning labels and a prohibition on sales to minors that have long been supported by the industry.

The industry opposed an earlier version of the bill, which would have unreasonably restricted the placement of Ephedra dietary supplement products in California retail outlets. Retail store owners had also opposed this provision.

“The California legislature has had the common sense to take a responsible course of protection, which our industry has advocated for years,” said Wes Siegner, general counsel, Ephedra Education Council. “Sound scientific research supports the labeling requirements included in SB 1884. These measures and the prohibition on sales to minors are also consistent with the industry’s national standards, and with laws in other states supported by the industry. Consumers continue to have access to Ephedra dietary supplements in all states. Consumers should check products to ensure the industry recommended serving limits and warnings are included, and read and follow the label warnings carefully.”

The bill was passed by the legislature at the end of August, and is now awaiting signature by Gov. Gray Davis.

Measures like the California bill are supported by the industry, because they send a strong message that Ephedra products are safe and beneficial, but they must be used properly. And, the industry has also worked to educate parents, trainers and coaches that Ephedra should not be used by anyone under the age 18.

According to the California bill, labels of Ephedra products sold in the state must include not only a warning about proper use, but also the Food and Drug Administration’s MedWatch number for reporting any adverse events. The bill is similar to measures, also supported by the industry, adopted in Ohio, Washington, Hawaii, Nebraska and Michigan.

“Obesity is a national health crisis—it’s the second-leading cause of premature death in the U.S.,” said Siegner. “Concerned Americans have the right to choose weight-loss products—such as those containing Ephedra—supported by sound scientific studies showing them to be safe and effective when used as directed. For more than 15 million Americans, Ephedra dietary supplements offer the potential for better health.”

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The Ephedra Education Council (EEC) is supported primarily by members of the Ephedra Committee of the American Herbal Products Association, a recognized leader in promoting the safe and responsible marketing of dietary supplements. The Council provides factual information to the media and public about dietary supplements containing Ephedra. For more information, logon to www.EphedraFacts.com.

Health & Nutrition Systems Announces Launch of Eat LessTM

WEST PALM BEACH, FLORIDA, September 12, 2002 -- Approximately 58 million Americans or about 1/3 of the United States population is overweight. In fact, Science has concluded that excess calories are a major contributing factor for excess weight gain and that a reduction in calories can be essential to long-term weight loss.

Health & Nutrition Systems, creators of Carb CutterTM and AcutrimTM have introduced its newest innovation, Eat LessTM. Eat LessTM is an all-natural, ephedra-free, dietary supplement that helps to reduce calories by creating a sensation of fullness. The proprietary Eat Less™ Blend helps to reduce calories by occupying space in the stomach when used with a large glass of water, so you eat less.

Supports weight loss
Assists reduced calorie weight loss programs
Supports energy

  • Ephedra-Free

Eat LessTM will be supported with a $1.2 million advertising campaign with over 300 million impressions.

These Drinks Are Tops! 7-Eleven Markets Novelty Beverages to 'Tweens & Teens in New Cooler Fun Zone

DALLAS, Sept. 12 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- "Quit playing with your food!" ... "Don't blow bubbles in your milk!" What's a mother to do? After all, kids will be kids, and marketers will be marketers. For today's marketers -- indeed, for today's kids -- "play" value of new food and beverage products is the name of the game. Fun foods sell, as do drinks in cartoon containers. Green ketchup, blue soft drinks, candy packaged as part of a toy, foods that turn your tongue a crazy color -- marketing food and beverages isn't just about tasting good, it's about doing something. Buzzwords like "play packaging," "interactive," "collectible" and "entertainment value" are prominent in the trade -- kids want their cake and play with it too.

Early last year, 7-Eleven (NYSE: SE) spotted some bottled beverages sporting cartoon character heads as bottle tops. Belly-Washers, 100-percent Vitamin C fortified beverages by IN ZONE Brands, were an instant hit among the convenience giant's youngest customers and parent customers of youngsters. The Powerpuff Girls, Scooby-Doo and Jurassic Park were the first licensed cartoon characters to catch kids attention ... not to mention other product manufacturers.

Juice, juice drinks, waters -- 7-Eleven saw an opportunity and enough new products to create a special beverage section just for kids. Billed as the Cooler Fun Zone, the new beverage section in the cooler is at eye-level -- kids' eye level -- and features beverages targeted to kids (ages 1-6), 'tweens (ages 7-12) and teens (ages 13-18). Participating 7-Eleven stores will carry approximately 9-12 different beverages with names like Tummy-Tickler, Baby Buddies, Cool Topz and Fun Water.

"We're excited about introducing a special section with all these fun new products," said 7-Eleven category manager Debbie Wildrick, who shares her office with a colorful community of cartoon character heads with bottle bodies. "We're targeting various ages with different characters and bottle sizes. Elmo from Sesame Street tops a 9.5-ounce Fun Water; Clifford the Big Red Dog and friends are on Tummy Ticklers fruit juices. For older kids, we've got SpongeBob Squarepants and Jimmy Neutron on Cool Topz drinks, and The Simpsons on Belly-Washers."

Wildrick points out that these drinks appeal to more than just kids. "A lot of adults have been buying the character-top drinks, and not just for their children. They see the fun in it, and want to collect them too. In fact, the first editions of the Power Ranger and Powerpuff Girls Belly-Washers bottles, now retired, are being sold on e-Bay!"

Manufacturers and retailers have realized that kids are people too -- little people with big money. Kid consumers -- those between the ages of 6 and 11 -- spend an estimated $24 billion a year and influence an additional $188 billion. They've been called triple-dip consumers -- spending their own money, their parents money, not to mention future spending as an adult.

Sesame Street, Nickelodeon, Cartoon Network, Warner Bros, Marvel Comics and others have jumped on the bandwagon, licensing their top characters to bottle tops. Suggested retail prices range from $.89 to $2.89. "A lot of people justify the price, because they re-use the bottle as a water bottle, or they just really like the character," Wildrick said. "It's a virtual cartoon show in the cooler door."

Belly-Washers executives were surprised themselves that convenience stores have proven the most successful outlet for their products. "7-Eleven was one of the first retailers to introduce the Belly-Washers line of interactive beverages and has been one of our biggest partners behind growing the business," said Jim Scott, CEO and co-founder of IN ZONE Brands, Inc.

Research shows that most children make their first independent purchase at a convenience store, typically purchasing a treat like candy or a beverage. "Convenience stores are kid-sized, small and compact, and easy to navigate. They first put Slurpee(R) on the map, and those kids are now buying Slurpee drinks for their own children."

About 7-Eleven, Inc.

7-Eleven, Inc. is the premier name and largest chain in the convenience retailing industry and is observing its 75th anniversary in 2002. Headquartered in Dallas, Texas, 7-Eleven, Inc. operates or franchises approximately 5,800 7-Eleven(R) stores in the United States and Canada and licenses approximately 17,000 7-Eleven stores in 17 other countries and territories throughout the world. During 2001, 7-Eleven stores worldwide generated total sales of more than $31 billion. Find out more online at http://www.7-eleven.com/ .

Advanced Nutraceuticals, Inc. Announces Finalization of Agreements For Conversion of $1.6 Million in Debt To Common Stock and Other Corporate Developments

DENVER, Sept. 13 /PRNewswire/ -- Advanced Nutraceuticals, Inc. (Nasdaq: ANII), announced today that it has reached agreements to convert $1,562,440 of convertible notes payable to directors and their affiliates, otherwise scheduled to mature during the period beginning November 2002 through July 2003, into 2,840,800 shares of ANII common stock. The conversion price agreed to was $0.55 per share, which represents approximately a 20% premium to the current trading market value. Management of the Company believes that the conversion is significant as it improves the financial position of the Company and improves the Company's prospects of extending or securing an alternative financing arrangement for, its senior debt facility, which matures in November 2002.

ANII's operations are conducted through two wholly owned subsidiaries, Bactolac Pharmaceutical Inc. and ANI Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (ANIP). Bactolac is a private label contract manufacturer of vitamins and supplements located in Hauppauge, New York. Under the direction of its founder, Dr. Pailla Reddy, Bactolac continues to show solid increases in revenues and profits, in a market that is currently facing competitive pressures.

Much of this improvement is attributed to Dr. Reddy's continuing commitment to customer satisfaction, combined with Bactolac's modern facility, which was recently upgraded with state-of-the-art lab equipment, high speed manufacturing equipment, in-house thin film coating equipment and flexible packaging equipment resulting in faster product turn around times and greater control of the quality and production processes.

ANIP is a contract and private label manufacturer of over-the-counter liquid and powder pharmaceutical products, primarily liquid stomach remedies, located in Gulfport, MS. ANIP has incurred significant losses from operations. The goodwill associated with the ANIP acquisition was written off earlier this year, as previously disclosed. Based on recent increases in the backlog of open orders combined with expense reductions, management is cautiously optimistic about future results of ANIP. Management continues to closely monitor the performance of this subsidiary, while exploring possible alternative strategic opportunities to best enhance the performance and value of the Company.

In June 2001, ANII sold its former subsidiary, Nutrition For Life International, Inc. ("NFLI") and received cash and two notes, a $5 million note payable in quarterly installments as part of the purchase price and a $650,000 note to Bactolac due in June 2002 in connection with a receivable for product sales. The $650,000 note was not paid when due and ANII believes that NFLI is not in compliance with various non-monetary provisions of the $5 million note. NFLI has claimed that ANII owes NFLI approximately $500,000 for various expenses. ANII believes that NFLI's claims have no merit.

At the time the sale of NFLI was recorded, ANII accounted for the two notes on the cost recovery method, and the remaining $5.2 million in face amounts outstanding on these notes is currently carried on ANII's balance sheet at approximately $690,000. ANII is currently in the process of evaluating the need to record an additional reserve of this remaining balance during the fourth quarter of the current fiscal year.

This press release includes "forward looking statements" as defined by the Securities and Exchange Commission (the "SEC"). All statements, other than statements of historical fact, included in the press release that address activities, events or developments that the Company believes or anticipates will or may occur in the future are forward-looking statements. These statements are based on certain assumptions made based on experience, expected future developments and other factors ANII believes are appropriate in the circumstances. Such statements are subject to a number of assumptions, risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond the control of ANII. Investors are cautioned that any such statements are not guarantees of future performance and that actual results or developments may differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements. Furthermore, ANII does not intend (and is not obligated) to update publicly any forward-looking statements. The contents of this release should be considered in conjunction with the warnings and cautionary statements contained in the Company's recent filings with the SEC.

Editorial: A Great Divide

By Len Monheit

While the industry wrestles with its credibility, and experts on the inside comment on the lack of truly innovative and useful research, what emerges is a classic example of the divide that exists between the scientific professional community and the marketing engine which drives product sales.

The scientific community is frequently criticized for focusing its research and resources on projects with limited applicability. Recent controversial studies in the US with inconclusive results relating to natural products have done nothing to enhance the feeling that there is a serious gap between the community conducting the research and the marketplace / consumer reality.

Hundreds, if not thousands, of academic and medical institutions are conducting research and clinical trials, many with potential implications for our industry. Millions of dollars are spent in these efforts, only to have the results fail to deliver value, or to languish in the pit of missed commercialization opportunities. Arguably, the increase in knowledge, science and understanding has an intrinsic value and the debate rages in institutions the world over about the merit of ‘pure’ research.

I see two gaps, largely relating to communication, which prevent ultimate delivery of science and research supported products to consumers. The first hole is in the connection between industry and the research community itself, with the second gap separating science and marketing.

Nutracon, Nutritionals and a few other events across North America attempt to build a bridge between research and industry to deal with the first issue. Many companies within our vertical deal closely with academic or medical institutions and have prominent scientists on advisory boards. The American Nutraceutical Association ( http://www.americanutra.com) develops and provides educational materials for health care professionals and consumers on nutraceutical technology and science yet they are not in communication with industry. No industry trade event has a poster session. Small and mid-size companies, in many cases started by entrepreneurs, may not have an appreciation or a sense of how to optimize a relationship with the scientific community, or if from the scientific sector themselves, will frequently lack market knowledge.

This leads to the second communication gap. In an article entitled, ‘ It’s an uphill task for branded ingredients with health benefits’ (New Nutrition Business, http://www.new-nutrition.com/news.asp) authors Julian Mellentin & Michael Heasman reflect on approaches to ingredient brand development, concluding, “Ingredient branding strategies are about selling science. They are about science push, not consumer pull – and as we say month after month, people buy food, not science.”

The question therefore becomes, can you sell science, and if so, how? Trends towards consumer empowerment, especially for health management would seem to suggest that there is an opportunity. From a regulatory standpoint, manufacturers must be careful how they frame their entire marketing programs and interpret scientific results, if indeed they have them. And, of course, beware the drug claim.

Within the supplements sector, more and more companies, (finished product manufacturers as well as ingredient suppliers) are positioning their products directed towards specific health conditions and groups. For a branded ingredient supplier, this an opportunity to refer to the science, but making a consumer impact based on the science is a serious challenge. Differentiating your product based on the science is near impossible. And so the marketing machine takes over and frequently, the science is lost entirely.

In the pharmaceutical industry the practitioner channel is a powerful stream and effectively used by companies educating medical professionals and through them, reaching consumers. Some companies within this industry are following similar strategies, either within the medical profession or the complementary practitioner channel.

There still exists that chasm between science and marketing, which ultimately leads to products which fail to deliver on expectations or suffer from poor adaptation of a good idea—or in this case good science.

And as always, where there’s a gap there’s an opportunity:

  • For those who know how to market science,
  • For those who can effectively educate consumers, retail and other channels
  • For companies that integrate science into their marketing programs effectively,
  • For institutions committed to working with industry
  • For experts who can build a network to enhance the flow of information
  • For companies that effectively link application analysis and market savvy and feedback loops throughout their entire product development cycles

Degussa BioActives Introduces New Director Sales & Marketing and Also North East Sales Manager

Degussa BioActives has great pleasure in announcing the following personnel appointment:

Jack Chenault has been newly appointed as Director Sales and Marketing for Dietary Supplements in North America based in Champaign, Illinois. Mr. Chenault has spent the past two years working in Germany as the Business Manager responsible for Functional Foods within Degussa BioActives. Previous to his position in Germany, Mr. Chenault held various sales and marketing management positions within Lucas Meyer before it was acquired and became part of Degussa in January 2000.

Gary Shap has been recently appointed to Sales Manager Northeast Region.

Mr Shap was previously with Daiichi Fine Chemicals and also held various sales & Technical positions with Cognis Health and Nutrition.

Degussa BioActives specializes in a wide range of health-promoting ingredients for the food and dietary supplement industry. Technical information on Degussa BioActives' full line of ingredients can be found on the web site at www.degussa-bioactives.com.

Degussa is an entirely newly-formed, multinational corporation with sales of EUR12.9 billion and a workforce of some 53,400. In fiscal 2001, the corporation generated operating profits (EBITA) of more than EUR1 billion. Degussa's core strength lies in highly effective system solutions tailored to the requirements of its customers in over 100 countries throughout the world. Its activities are led by the vision "Everybody benefits from a Degussa product – every day and everywhere".

Nature's Sunshine Products Authorizes New 1,000,000 Common Share Repurchase Plan

PROVO, Utah--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Sept. 12, 2002--Nature's Sunshine Products, Inc. (NASDAQ:NATR), a leading manufacturer and marketer of encapsulated herbs and vitamins, announced today that its Board of Directors approved a new stock repurchase program for up to 1,000,000 additional shares of its common stock.

The Company also reported that it had completed the repurchase of 1,000,000 common shares authorized in February 2001 at an average purchase price of $11.00 per share. Over the past two years, Nature's Sunshine has repurchased approximately 2.5 million shares of common stock in the open market. There are approximately 15.7 million shares outstanding.

The Company approved the buyback plan because the Board of Directors believes the stock is undervalued and is an attractive investment. The stock will be purchased in the open market and will be used for general corporate purposes.

Nature's Sunshine Products manufactures and markets through direct sales encapsulated and tableted herbal products, high quality natural vitamins and other complementary products. In addition to the U.S., the Company has operations in South Korea, Brazil, Mexico, Venezuela, Japan, Canada, Colombia, the United Kingdom and Ireland, Peru, Central America, Ecuador and Israel. The Company also has exclusive distribution agreements with selected companies in Argentina, Australia, Chile, New Zealand, Malaysia, Norway and the Russian Federation.

Statements in this press release concerning the Company's business outlook or future economic performance, anticipated profitability, revenues, expenses or other financial items, and product line growth, together with other statements that are not historical facts, are "forward-looking statements" as that term is defined under Federal Securities Laws. "Forward-looking statements" are subject to risks, uncertainties and other factors which could cause actual results to differ materially from those set forth in such statements. Such risks, uncertainties and factors include, but are not limited to, foreign business risks, industry cyclicality, fluctuations in customer demand and order pattern, the seasonal nature of the business, changes in pricing and general economic conditions, as well as other risks detailed in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

For more information, contact us at our website at www.natr.com

--30--kk/ny*

Research May Take The 'Anti' Out Of Antioxidants

EAST LANSING, Mich. – In the quest to repair damaged DNA – a process believed crucial in combating ailments ranging from cancer to aging – antioxidant has been the Holy Grail. But findings published this week in Nature suggest oxidation isn't always the enemy. Scientists at Michigan State University, along with colleagues in England, have uncloaked a mechanism that uses oxygen to repair DNA – until now an unlikely part of the restorative recipe. Their work is published in the Sept. 12 issue of the British science journal Nature.

"This offers possibilities to anyone working in the DNA repair field who likely hasn't considered oxygenation before," said Robert Hausinger, an MSU microbiology and biochemistry professor. "The field has been so focused against it."

Hausinger, his doctoral student Timothy Henshaw and colleagues from the Cancer Research UK London Research Institute in Hertfordshire, England, figured out how an enzyme in E. coli bacteria handily repairs DNA that suffer a common type of damage. In particular, one peril that can befall DNA is a process called methylation, in which a methyl group latches on to the strand, threatening mutation.

Enzymes are the superheroes of the DNA world, rushing to fix the strands that are the building blocks of all life. Some proteins are effective at knocking off the offending methyl group, but die in the process. This "suicide repair" means the enzymes are only good for one fight. Others get rid of the methyl group along with one of the rungs of the DNA ladder, leaving a big hole in the DNA strand that must be repaired.

Hausinger and Henshaw focused their attention on the protein AlkB. Researchers have known AlkB for years, but didn't understand how the enzyme worked its repair magic. The MSU team discovered it neatly performs a chemical mambo that uses iron and oxygen to burn off the renegade methyl group. What's left at the end of oxidation is formaldehyde.

The British part of the team – Sarah Trewick, Tomas Lindahl and Barbara Sedgwick, confirmed repair of the DNA, allowing survival of the cells.

"It's sweet," Hausinger said. "It burns off the methylation and doesn't kill itself in the process. It can work on one lesion and then move on and do it again."

Methylation isn't always bad, Hausinger said, but rather is an important natural process that also occurs in human DNA. However, the process is part of DNA damage associated with some environmental toxins, as well as in cancer and maladies of aging.

"Although we worked with AlkB from E. coli, the enzyme is actually found in a wide variety of organisms, including humans," Henshaw said. "Since it’s so widely conserved, it’s likely to have a role in some crucial biological functions."

The U.S. National Institutes of Health funded the research.