Leading Swedish food manufacturer Procordia Food is to launch a series of health-enhancing foods, it has announced, reaching a deal with compatriot BioGaia for use of its probiotic bacteria Lactobacillus reuteri in certain products on the Nordic market.
The company said it was logical step to increase its focus on one of the major trends currently driving consumer purchasing.
Mikael Aru, managing director of Procordia, owned by Norway's Orkla Foods, also said the business will be intensifying the pace of product development.
"We intend to take initiatives in promoting health, well-being and environmental issues. Today's collaboration agreement is a positive example of such an initiative together with a strategic partner," said Aru.
The company, which had sales of SK3.3 billion (€0.37bn) in 2002, will launch the first Reuteri products at the beginning of 2004.
Reuteri occurs naturally in the digestive tract of humans and animals and growing evidence suggests that it can help maintain balance in the intestinal microflora and fight infection. BioGaia has announced a number of licensing deals with both manufacturers and retailers globally in recent months.
Procordia brands include Felix, Ekströms, önos BOB, Risifrutti and FUN Light.