MNI is the international trade association for companies providing specialised nutritional solutions for a global health care sector. Its members include Abbott Nutrition, Baxer, B. Braun, Fresenius Kabi, Nestlé Health Science and Nutricia.
Established in 2005, the association has appointed its first executive director Léa Coulet to extend the scope of MNI’s activities.
Speaking to NutraIngredients, Coulet said the timing of the appointment was important.
"Years 2014-2016 are a crucial period for the medical nutrition sector in Europe and around the globe as these regions are defining or updating their regulatory framework for food for special medical purposes (FSMP),” she said.
MNI aimed to promote access to nutritional intervention and contribute to a clear and harmonized regulatory framework for medical nutrition globally, among other goals. In the short-term, it had identified three crucial regions for its initiatives because of newly introduced or evolving legislation, Coulet explained.
In 2013 Europe adopted the FSG Regulation covering food for special medical purposes."The delegated act is expected to be available between now and mid-2015. It is therefore very important for the medical nutrition industry to support these discussions to ensure a fair and balanced regulatory framework," said Coulet.
In Asia, the establishment of the ASEAN Economic Community by 2015 was another strategic priority for MNI. "The ASEAN region represents a market of 600 million people, which is 20% more than the EU. MNI is heavily investing in the region, and would welcome the harmonisation of rules and standards. We all know that harmonisation, if well done, leads to administrative simplification, improved market access, and costs savings,” she added.
In Latin America, some of the countries were reviewing the legislative framework for medical products, she said, and therefore the region was another short-term focus. "In Colombia, for instance, the medical nutrition products are being shifted from the pharmaceutical to food legislation, which has a significant impact on the level of reimbursement of these products.”
Coulet who joined MNI from COCIR, the trade asscociation for medical technology industry, said it was a pleasure, challenge and honour to join the MNI as its first executive director.
“...The medical nutrition sector is a dynamic innovative industry, where advances in science and the care for people with specific nutritional needs converge," she said.