Leading vitamins and carotenoids supplier Roche Vitamins has signed a co-operation agreement with German biotech company AnalytiCon Discovery to assist in its search for new nutraceuticals.
Roche Vitamins is to screen edible plants and other foodstuffs, such as spices, for their potential as sources of nutraceuticals. The Roche project comes with increasing knowledge of the free radical-fighting properties of fruits and vegetables and the growing demand from food and pharmaceutical industries for natural source ingredients.
Based in Potsdam, Germany, AnalytiCon Discovery will develop a programme for the selection and acquisition of materials used in the Roche project, and help with the purification and structure elucidation of the compounds found. The company currently specialises in research on active substances based on natural compounds.
Roche Vitamins, the division recently bought by Dutch group DSM, said that the co-operation is consistent with its search for healthier nutrition, and is in line with the company's motto "prevention before therapy".
Dr Manfred Eggersdorfer, head of research and development at Roche Vitamins, welcomed the agreement: "For Roche Vitamins it is an important step to have signed a co-operation agreement with such an innovative company. I am convinced that the high competence of AnalytiCon Discovery in the field of natural compounds makes them an ideal partner for us in our efforts in the nutraceutical business."
Pierre-Etienne Weber, head of global marketing, said that this initiative fits well with the unit's strategy of providing innovative products and customers' solutions.
Roche's Vitamins and Fine Chemicals unit last year recorded sales of more than SF3.5 billion.