Kerry celebrates 'hat trick' with gut, brain and women's health innovations

By Nikki Hancocks

- Last updated on GMT

Getty | Elena Nechaeva
Getty | Elena Nechaeva

Related tags Awards P&g ashwagandha

Taste and nutrition giant Kerry is celebrating success across three ingredient categories in the NI Awards this year - cognitive function, microbiome modulation, and women's health.

Izaskun Monsalve PhD, global marketing manager for women's, infant & heart health, and proactive health at Kerry, said on winning the awards: “The NutraIngredients awards recognise the most innovative, on-trend, research-backed ingredients, so we’re obviously delighted.

"Winning in just one category would have been fantastic, but walking away with three is incredible. This ‘hat trick’ is a reflection of the hard work of the whole Kerry team, and our commitment to helping manufacturers create science-backed ingredients that meet the changing needs of today’s consumers.

"It’s particularly great to see some of the newest additions to the Kerry ProActive Health portfolio getting the limelight they deserve.”

Ingredient of the Year: Cognitive Function

Kerry's Sensoril Ashwagandha ingredient is a high-purity extract of ashwagandha root and leaves supported by more than 16 clinical trials designed for products focused on cognitive health benefits, including stress, sleep and focus.

According to the taste and nutrition experts, Sensoril works within a variety of applications including, supplements, functional beverages and foods, and pet products. 

Ally Coda, assistant marketing manager, cognitive health, at Kerry said: “Ashwagandha is one of the best studied adaptogens, with clinical research attesting to its positive influence on stress levels​. It’s also one of the best known ingredients for cognitive support, with six in ten consumers – across all age groups – having heard of it [according to Innova Trends Survey, 2022]. 

"Sensoril, which uses the whole of the ashwagandha plant for maximum effectiveness, has been studied in human clinical trials, and has been shown to positively influence stress responses​ as well as helping to improve mood and sleep quality.”

Ingredient of the Year: Microbiome Modulation

Infant formula ingredient LC40 Infant (Lactobacillus fermentum CECT5716 LC40) is one of the most common probiotic species found in women's breast milk. It is a clinically supported, patented probiotic that colonises the infant's gut. This supplement offers a safe and effective way to support infant immune health and is supported by clinical studies demonstrating reductions in respiratory infections and diarrhea.

Izaskun Monsalve PhD, global marketing manager, Women's, Infant & Heart Health, ProActive Health at Kerry, says the ingredient has been found to be effective for preventing infections when administered as an ingredient in infant formula in three randomised clinical trials.

She says the most 'exciting' research is within babies born by C-section.

"Most recently, researchers focused specifically on infants born by C-section, and found that LC40 can reduce gastrointestinal infections by up to 73%, with incidence of respiratory infections also reduced. The reason this is so exciting is that it indicates that the effect that LC40 offers is even greater in infants delivered by C-section – a group at particularly high risk of infection.”

Innovation in Women’s Health

The firm has utilised this same strain to create Hereditum LC40 Breastcare targeting the large percentage of women who struggle with mastitis during lactation. Mastitis may be characterized by a mammary bacterial dysbiosis, making lactation difficult and, in some cases, lead to the cessation of breastfeeding. This option provides an option for treatment when traditionally antibiotic treatment has been practically the only solution.  

Monsalve said women’s health is going to be a huge focus area for Kerry in the coming months and years, making this a particularly important category to be recognised within.

"Hereditum LC40 Breastcare supports breast health during lactation and has been clinically shown to help prevent premature cessation of breastfeeding due to mastitis. It includes Lactobacillus fermentum​ CECT5716, the first patented probiotic strain isolated from women’s breast milk.”

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