With the new centre the firm, divested out of Belgian company Solvay in 2013, sought to "understand the effect of new bio-based ingredients on the intestinal microbiota using state-of-the-art technologies in genomics”.
“After two years in the laboratory of life sciences at Agoranov, we needed a new R&D framework able to accommodate our new ambitions" said Pascal Ronfard, president and founder of Solactis.
The facility will be located at the Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique (INRA) campus in Jouy-en-Josas.
Galactofructose (lactulose) won approval from the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) for contributing, “to a reduction in intestinal transit time” when consumed at a level of 10g per day.
The nutrient is a prebiotic but the effect in this case was acidic rather than prebiotic in nature and so was not deemed strictly a prebiotic claim.
Lactulose is a disaccharide consisting of galactose and fructose and traditionally used in the pharma sector for its constipation battling effects, but Group Solactis's focus is purely foods and food supplements, and feed.
Lactulose-containing products on-market in Europe include fruit juices in Germany, baked products in France, infant nutrition products in northern Europe and fermented milk in the Ukraine.
The EFSA opinion can be found here.