NutraIngredients Awards class of 2020: ‘Recognition helped expand our footprint into Europe’

By Will Chu

- Last updated on GMT

NutraIngredients Awards: ‘Recognition expanded EU footprint’

Related tags: Awards, Nutrigenomix, personalisation

In the second in our series profiling past winners of the NutraIngredients Awards, we take a look at Nutrigenomix, the genetic testing firm that triumphed in the Personalised Nutrition Initiative Award back in 2020.

In a hotly contested category, the judges were impressed by Nutrigenomix’s Plant-Based Personalised Nutrition & Fitness test that provides DNA-based dietary advice for those on a vegetarian or vegan diet.

In keeping with current trends and the move towards a more sustainable lifestyle, the test offers these recommendations based on 70 genetic markers including macronutrient, micronutrient and fitness insights.

The results are delivered through healthcare practitioners, enabling further personalisation and behaviour changes for the long-term.

NutraIngredients spoke to Dr. Ahmed El-Sohemy, Founder & Chief Science Officer of Nutrigenomix.

Nuta Awards 2021 trophy

Thanks for taking the time to chat with us. Firstly, what made you decide to compete for the Personalised Nutrition Initiative Award?

“Nutrigenomix has been pushing the envelope of innovation in personalised nutrition for years with the only genetic test for personalised nutrition available on the market that is validated by randomised controlled clinical trials.

“We were the first company to launch a genetic test kit for personalised nutrition exclusively for use by healthcare professionals, and we innovated by developing specialised tests aimed at particular consumers such as athletes, couples who are trying to conceive, and individuals following plant-based diets.

“Last year we became the first genetic testing company to incorporate a validated dietary assessment questionnaire and fully personalised DNA-based meal plans. These tools provide additional insights into which DNA-based recommendations are being met by a person’s current diet, which areas they may need to focus their efforts on, and what meals and foods to incorporate into their diet to ensure that they are meeting their DNA-based dietary recommendations and health goals.”

What difference did the Award make for your company and its business/research activity in 2020?

“Receiving the Personalised Nutrition Initiative Award helped us expand our footprint in Europe to an even greater extent. This recognition is allowing us to become a household name among European healthcare practitioners as the providers of the gold standard in genetic tests for personalised nutrition.”

Do you think the win has opened up more opportunities to Nutrigenomix and the business’ growth and development?

Ahmed El-Sohemy
Dr. Ahmed El-Sohemy. ©Nutrigenomix

“In an increasingly competitive marketplace and with added pressure from COVID-19, Nutrigenomix not only weathered the challenges of the past year, but in fact we saw a growth in sales and greater interest in our service from healthcare practitioners around the globe.

“The award also helped us attract large food and pharma companies that we are currently in discussions with for potential partnerships.

“Undoubtedly, winning the Personalised Nutrition Initiative award helped us remain top-of-mind for healthcare practitioners and businesses seeking to innovate their practice during the uncertain times of the pandemic.”

Would you say the award win served as a stepping stone or trigger towards exploring new areas of research or business development?

“After winning the Personalised Nutrition Initiative Award, we were keen to continue our momentum of innovation. We launched a very successful webinar series on scientific and practical aspects of nutrigenomics and personalised nutrition that has been very well attended.

“Being a company that began as a start-up launched by researchers at the University of Toronto, we have always prided ourselves in providing state-of-the-art training and scientific support for healthcare practitioners.

“In terms of research, the Nutrigenomics, Overweight/Obesity, and Weight Management (NOW) randomised controlled trial​published a few months ago in the British Medical Journal demonstrated that actionable genetic information leads to greater long-term dietary changes and adherence compared to the gold standard lifestyle intervention.”

Finally, do you have any advice for future Personalised Nutrition Initiative Award competitors?

“Focus on doing what you do best and always look for ways to improve your product or service by innovating. Think big – aim to compete in different regions, as this will help you focus your efforts on expanding your reach outside of your immediate geographical area.”

Need to know more?

Nutra Awards 2021

With the deadline for applications to the NutraIngredients Awards fast approaching, it's vital that your applications are as strong as they can be.

But which award should you apply for, what are the key criteria for this year’s categories​, and what do the judges look for in a great entry?

Our judges’ top tips​ from last year’s Awards will ensure you know exactly what to enter for, and how to make your entry stand out! Our judges this year​ are looking for more of the same!  

While these top tips and hints​​ from the judges​​ will certainly help to improve your application, check out the NutraIngredients Awards website​​ for further details.

To be in with a chance of winning, submit your entry​​ ​before Monday 18 January 2021.

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