Editor’s Spotlight: Video diaries

Authenticity in focus: Taking charge of responsibility of traceability and quality control

By Nathan Gray contact

- Last updated on GMT

In the latest of our NutraIngredients video diaries, we look at key issues of traceability, quality control and authenticity.

While they have certainly been on the agenda for many years, the issues of traceability, authenticity and quality control have been a weak point for the industry historically. 

Yet with growing consumer demand comes a higher interest in quality controls. 

Great strides have already been made to cut out issues in the botanical sector, but with mounting pressure many are asking what is next, and where the responsibility lies.

According to Leslie Lannebere, global category manager for nutrition at Naturex, there  has been a shift in consumer interest in authenticity - with much more care given to where products come from.

"The main challenge today is definitely the image of the industry,"​ she said, "Quality, authenticity, sustainability, are key words on the market and if you are not able to provide at least one strand to demonstrate that you are a qualitative player then you cannot perform on the market."

Itay Shafat, product manager for cognitive line and sports nutrition at Frutarom Health added that industry has the key responsibility to drive improvements in authenticity - citing the 'tremendous blows' that Ginko Biloba has suffered due to adulteration in recent years as a warning to other areas.

"The industry has responsibility,"​ he said. "The consumers don't have the means to know, to test the quality of the product."

Indeed, Shafat noted that the only thing a consumer will notice is whether a product does or does not work - and that this can lead to long-term issues when people begin to beleive an ingredient does not work because of large-scale issues in authenticity. 

"We have responsibility, we need to bring quality product with whatever certifications we can have,"​ he commented. "We try to do our part, and I can only encourage the rest of the industry to do the same."

Lannebere noted that it is important for the industry to provide authenticity about supply chain, and to provide a strong traceability from the field to the finished product.

"That's our responsibility. To lead the way regarding sustainability, authenticity and quality."

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