CS Health's trademarked retail-packaged supplement contains sgs (sulforaphane glucosinolate) from broccoli seed extract, which is produced under license from patent-holders Brassica Protection Products and John Hopkins University.
An antioxidant that has been researched for its anti-cancer and heart health benefits, sgs occurs naturally in cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, Brussels sprouts and kale.
Vitalica is marketed as contributing to the integrity of cells, a detoxifier that induced phase II enzyme activity, and to boost the body's immune defence systems.
The new distribution agreement marks the first launch of Vitalica though a distributor positioned to take it into multiple channels in the retail segment - for instance, through pharmacies, retail food chains and independents.
Until now it has been provided to the practitioner segment, and has been "growing successfully", according to CS Health's Joseph Lyons. It has also been sold on a direct basis, but at a higher price so as to discourage direct purchasing in anticipation of the retail option.
The company said that it chose Modern Sales to distribute the product as its sister company, Whole Alternatives, already has a strong relationship with it for the sale of organic and commercial seeds and beans, whole foods, and retail-packaged foods in North America.
CS Health is not simply handing over the reins to Vitalica without a second glace. "We will remain closely engaged in the distribution of our valuable, scientifically-based supplement to the retail customer," said CEO Dan Caudill.
Separate developments to take Vitalica into the Canadian retail market are expected to be announced shortly.
Following the discovery of sulforaphane at John Hopkins in 1992, proprietary new broccoli strains rich in glucoraphanin and its metabolite sulforaphane were developed by licensee Brassica Protection Products.
Brassica's three-day-old broccoli plants are said to provide 20 times the concentration of SGS as found in adult broccoli.
Sgs-100 is a seed extract for use in dietary supplements (tablets, capsules or soft gels), functional and conventional foods and personal care products. It was introduced by CS Health last year and is distributed by B&D Nutritional Ingredients. It is currently being use by four formulators whose private-label capsules, tablets and powders are sold in the US and Canada.
Although all of these are presently single ingredients, "multiple ingredient formulations are now under research by several firms," said Lyons.