Potent 30 per cent PAC cranberry extract launched

By Shane Starling

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Urinary tract infection

Lallemand Health Ingredients and Decas Botanical Synergies have debuted a cranberry extract with 30 per cent proanthocyanidins (PACs), a level they say is the highest in the world.

Lallemand and Decas conducted independent lab testing on several of their competitors’ products which determined the PACs content of their CystiCran concentrate was the most potent. Yet other suppliers like Diana Naturals also claim a 30 per cent PACs content.

Lallemand business development manager, Julie Rosenborg, said CystiCran delivered a greater payload of A-linked​PACs, which have been shown to be the most active in inhibiting the Escherichia coli ​bacteria that adhere to the urinary tract and usually cause the painful urinary tract infections (UTI) that affect many woman.

Whether this was down to the extraction process or the particular variety of sub-species of the North American cranberry species Vaccinium macrocarpon​, was unclear, but the Noveal Services testing Lallemand and Decas commissioned confirmed the enhanced A-link PACs levels, Rosenborg said.

“We have employed the European Pharmacopeia method and tested several major products,”​ she told NutraIngredients.com this morning from Lallemand’s Danish office. “But this is a premium ingredient and that is why we have interest from the pharmaceutical industry.”

Food supplements and pharma products would be the primary markets, with discussion advancing with pharma players about “one-pill-a-day” ​products that delivered UTI benefits such as those outlined in the French cranberry UTI health claim.

Cranberry claims

That claim, approved by AFSSA (Agence Francaise de securite sanitaire des aliments) is the world’s only authorised claim for antioxidant-laden cranberry or any other fruit and has been forwarded under article 13.1 of the European Union nutrition and health claims regulation.

Rosenborg said dialogue with potential customers was contingent to a large degree on the opinion issued by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), which may come as early as July, when the first batch of about 1000 article 13.1 claim verdicts is expected to be delivered.

“While there have been a lot of rejections so far we are confident about this claim because it is one of the few claims that has already been approved and the science backing the claim is very strong,” ​she said.

In reference to the Ocean Spray UTI claim dismissed by EFSA recently, Rosenborg said it was a shame that decision had been reached before the AFSSA claim could be adjudicated upon.

“The Ocean Spray decision had an impact and was disappointing for industry but it employed different science with different products and we hope EFSA will agree with AFSSA.”

Methods of analysis

She expressed a hope that EFSA would also contribute to a unifying of PACs measurements in its upcoming decisions – a subject that industry both in Europe and in North America has been working to clarifying.

“There are at least four methods in use and this can be confusing,”​ she observed.

Burgundy Botanical Extracts, Diana Naturals, and Tournay Biotechnologies recently established the European Association for the Valorization of Cranberry (Euracran), which favours the European Pharmacopeia.

The ingredient will be formally debuted at the Vitafoods trade show in May.

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