Robertet launches tech to encapsulate powdered essential oil for supplements

By Will Chu

- Last updated on GMT

Natural ingredient producer Robertet has revealed an encapsulation technology, which uses the prebiotic inulin as a carrier, transporting essential oils into powders for improved absorption.

Natur-Cell is the firm’s patented technology that enables the use of essential oils in nutraceuticals providing a clean label solution to food supplements companies.

The technology was developed to provide a new natural solution for capsule and tablet delivery forms currently available on the market.

“The technology was first developed to protect Robertet’s flavours profile,”​ says a Robertet spokesperson.

“Using oils is not easy. Natur-Cell is also an alternative to softgels, which are provide a solution to enable essential oils in oil form but often have long lead time and high minimum order quantity.”

Sports and digestion

Robertet add that while the technology is suitable for all health categories, the prebiotic inulin carrier means it is especially relevant for sports nutrition and digestive supplements.

The current European regulatory framework that recognises the use of essential oils in supplement form remains a complex pathway to navigate.

On the back of the delay in clarifying botanical regulation, the European Commission has been working on its own project with the Regulatory Fitness Evaluation (REFIT) evaluating whether rules for botanical health claims used in foods are up to the task.

The project mirrors that of Belgium, Italy and France, who created the BELFRIT project designed to regulate botanical use in food supplements.

News of new regulation recognising essential oil use in oral form came in December 2018, when the French Directorate General for Competition, Consumption and Fraud Prevention (DGCRF) published a list​ of 77 botanicals that listed certain essential oils as “traditional”.

This status allows the oil to be administered orally in food supplements and placed on the market more easily than before.

‘Marketing products made easier’

“The list published by the DGCCRF brings a clear recognition to the oral use of 77 botanicals from which essential oils are considered traditional,”​ said Robertet.

“French companies can now place their finished products on the market more easily than before, by using the registration with article 15 instead of the mutual recognition with another European country.

“So, more and more companies are now considering using essential oils by oral use in and outside of France.

“Outside of France, we are seeing international companies, which use this list as an additional safety proof for the oral consumption of essential oils while following all the other recommendations (species, dose, specific substances to monitor, disclaimer…).

"The DGCCRF list is not a law but clearly has a legal value in France."

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