Enzymotec expands to US

By Lorraine Heller

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Krill oil, Cholesterol, Atherosclerosis, Enzymotec, Us

Israeli ingredient firm Enzymotec has opened a US subsidiary, which
the firm hopes will help it improve service to customers and
penetrate new areas of activity - particularly functional foods.

The new company is based in Summit, New Jersey, and will provide direct sales and technical support services to US customers. It is also due to be accompanied by warehouse storage, which will "soon"​ allow Enzymotec to speed up delivery time to customers. Until now, Enzymotec has been selling its ingredients in the US either from its headquarters in Israel, or through distributors. Sales through distributors will continue as before, said the firm, but all direct dealings with the company will now go through its US subsidiary. For the time being, Enzymotec said it has no plans to move any production facilities to the country. "We don't currently see a need to manage production here. Maybe it will happen but not now. For now, the idea is to be closer to our customers, to deliver a better response time,"​ said Enzymotec USA chief executive officer Elzaphan Hotam, who was previously Enzymotec's VP of business development. "It will also allow us to penetrate new areas of activity, like functional foods,"​ he told NutraIngredients-USA.com. The new company will also allow Enzymotec to "serve as a local base for additional business activities,"​ he said. Hotman is currently the only employee at the US subsidiary, but is due to build up a team. Products ​Hotman said Enzymotec's best selling product in the US market is its PS cognitive health ingredient. PS (phosphatidylserine) is a phospholipid that occurs naturally in the organs such as brain, liver and kidneys. It plays an important role in regulating the functionality of key proteins in cell membranes, and has been shown to have a role in slowing or even reversing some forms of age-related cognitive deteriorations - such as short term memory and the capacity to learn new tasks. So far, Enzymotec's Sharp-PS product has been used in supplements for the last 20 years to improve memory, concentration and other cognitive capabilities, especially for the aged population. In January this year the ingredient received GRAS (generally recognized as safe) status, and the firm hopes it will be able to create a market for it in functional foods. Enzymptec's krill oil is also a strong seller in the US market, said Hotman, adding that "we see huge potential for krill oil to be the next generation of omega-3".​ Krill oil, rich in omega-3, phospholipids and antioxidants, is derived from the planktonic family of crustacean. Enzymotec entered the still immature market for krill oil last year, supplying the ingredient for use in dietary supplements. In February this year it received GRAS for its krill oil. Enzymotec said its GPC also has good sales in the US. This is used in supplements and is aimed at improving mental and cognitive abilities. It is an alpha-Glycerol PhosphatidylCholine. In addition, Hotman said the firm is taking the first steps towards promoting its CardiaBeat heart health ingredient in the US, and said it has received a "good"​ initial response. CardiaBeat is an extension of Enzymotec's functional oil formulation MultOil. This has been shown to potentially reduce the risk for coronary heart disease through preventing and controlling oxidative stress, reducing total cholesterol and triglyceride levels and inhibiting the atherosclerotic plaque formation cascade. Enzymotec said this means it tackles more heart health indicators than many ingredients on the market, which look only after cholesterol management. CardiaBeat is also said to enhance the impact of plant sterols and omega-3s on cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk reduction.

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