A matter of weeks after it achieved Novel Foods approval for its ingredient Brana Vita, Belgian start-up Fugiea has announced a partnership with Nestlé to develop bran fibre foods.
Arabinoxylan oligosaccharides (AXOS)-rich Brana Vita are marketed as prebiotics and have GRAS (Generally Recognized As Safe) status in the USA.
"We are excited to work together with a world leading nutrition company," said Fugeia managing director and co-founder, Willem Broekaert.
"This collaboration first of all aims to strengthen scientific evidence for the benefits of Brana Vita. With our combined capabilities I am confident that we will develop novel applications addressing well defined nutritional requirements, based on the newest scientific insights."
Last month, Brana Vita was granted Novel Foods status in the EU. The approval applies to the use of Brana Vita in a range of functional food categories including breakfast cereals, dairy products and drinks with a 3g dose per serving allowed in most applications.
“Wheat bran is widely known and trusted as an excellent fibre source with a positive impact on digestive health. Our market research shows that consumers will recognise foods made with fibre from wheat bran as premium products,” said Broekaer.
In May 2008 Tate&Lyle Ventures – T&L’s independent investment company – invested €3.5m in Fugeia. At the time, managing partner, Simon Barnes said Fugeia's patented technologies and applications presented "genuine differentiation" in the prebiotics sector.
"The prebiotic ingredients market is dominated by inulin but Fugeia is working with natural wheat bran fibre which has a different set of functionality," Barnes said. "Studies indicate it is more persistent in the distal colon which is very exciting as it addresses health concerns such as colon cancer."
"Fugeia will build a whole portfolio around wheat bran."
The latest knowledge and industrial applications in human microflora including probiotics will be discussed at the MICROBIOTA two-day conference in Paris on December 13-14, 2011. For more information click here.