Cognis’ Phytosterols Used in New Chinese Milk Product

Cognis Nutrition & Health, a leading supplier of natural phytosterols scientifically proven to help reduce cholesterol, announced a national launch of China’s first sterol-enriched milk by Meng Niu, the No. 1 milk company in China.

The new milk is available at major food stores throughout China.

Cognis’ phytosterols enjoy regulatory approval in numerous countries and are marketed with the ingredient brand name Heart Choice® in North America and Vegapure® in other regions of the world, including China. Cognis announced in May that Health Canada has granted Novel Foods Approval for Cognis‘plant sterols, paving the way for the launch of cholesterol-lowering foods and beverages in Canada. Cognis’phytosterols is clinically proven to lower cholesterol up to 15 percent with a health claim approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Leon Chen, Business Manager, Cognis Nutrition & Health, Greater China, explained that Cognis’ state-of-the-art technology provided the foundation for this launch. “Sterols do not dissolve easily in water or oil, so they can create challenges for many food applications. Using our special esterification process at Cognis’ production facility in Germany, we found an innovative way to make it work while maintaining the milk’s superior taste and appearance.”

Phytosterols are found naturally in vegetables, fruits, vegetable oils, legumes, nuts, and grains. While the molecular structure of plant sterols is similar to cholesterol, our body can only absorb cholesterol, and not much of the plant sterols. “Because of this unique difference, dietary plant sterols compete with cholesterol thus blocking the absorption of dietary cholesterol into the bloodstream,” said David Cai, PhD, Senior Science and Regulatory Manager, Cognis Nutrition & Health, North America and Asia. Considering there is a large population in China that is increasingly experiencing cholesterol-related health issues due to poor dietary choices, this milk could be a significant contribution toward a healthier and more balanced diet pattern to help reduce the risk of cholesterol-related heart disease.”

About Cognis’ Plant Sterols and Sterol Esters:

With a broad portfolio of natural source, kosher, non-GM/IP certified plant sterols and sterol esters, Cognis’ product line is ideal for a variety of functional food applications and dietary supplements. Cognis has demonstrated a leadership position in sterols for decades, with production facilities in the United States, Germany and France.

For more information about Cognis’ Heart Choice®natural phytosterols, visit or, or in North America, call 800.673.3702 to place an order or e-mail [email protected].

About Cognis

Cognis is a worldwide supplier of specialty chemicals and nutritional ingredients, with a particular focus on the areas of wellness and sustainability. The company employs about 5,500 people, and it operates production sites and service centers in 30 countries. Cognis has dedicated its activities to a high level of sustainability and provides value adding solutions and products based on renewable raw materials. The company serves the food, nutrition and healthcare markets, and the cosmetics, detergents and cleaners industries. Another main focus is on products for a number of other industries, such as coatings and inks, lubricants, as well as agriculture and mining.

Cognis is currently owned by private equity funds advised by Permira, GS Capital Partners, and SV Life Sciences. In 2009, Cognis recorded sales of about 2.6 billion euros and an Adjusted EBITDA (operating result) of 364 million euros.

About Meng Niu

Meng Niu, headquartered in Hohhot, Inner Mongolia, produces the top-selling dairy products in China including milk, yogurt and ice-cream. It is the first dairy company to exceed RMB 20 billion sales revenue in China.

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