Swiss herb player reaping benefits of eastern Europe expansion

By Shane STARLING

- Last updated on GMT

Frutarom: “Some of the pharma companies enter the dietary supplements market and they expect to use the highest quality ingredients in their formulations.”
Frutarom: “Some of the pharma companies enter the dietary supplements market and they expect to use the highest quality ingredients in their formulations.”

Related tags: European union, Medicine

Swiss botanicals player Frutarom is pushing hard into botanical medicines and supplements markets in the EU, with pharma-grade extracts produced at its recently acquired Slovenian facility.

Frutarom in December last year paid about €9m for Vitiva, including its pharma-grade botanical extracts facility and a line of about 15 herbal extracts including elderberry, acerola, valerian, bearberry, passion flower, spinach, carrot, and carotenoid blends.

Maider Gutierrez, marketing manager in Frutarom’s Health Business Unit, told us the output – that adds to facilities in Switzerland, the US and Spain – was suitable for both pharmaceutical and nutraceutical applications.

“Some of the pharma companies enter the dietary supplements market and they expect to use the highest quality ingredients in their formulations,”​ Gutierrez said.

“Currently the main market for the pharma GMP products in Europe is under the THMPD [Traditional Herbal Medicinal Products Directive], but we don’t exclude the possibility of reaching other markets and regions where these traditional extracts are well known.”

General manager of the Health BU, Holger Riemensperger, said the acquisition of Vitiva was enriching Frutarom’s position as a botanical player.

 “Vitiva brings to the table not just this important addition to our portfolio but also its know-how, technical support, production and innovative methods. Our expertise will be applied toward incorporating these new ingredients in our system and increase service to our client base.”

THMPD-approved products include passion flower and valerian for mental health, lemon balm for digestive health and bearberry for urinary tract health. 

The THMPD became active in April 2011, but its market implementation has differed among the EU’s 28 member states, giving products sell-through periods.

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