Key themes from Vitafoods 2023

By Nikki Hancocks

- Last updated on GMT

Key themes from Vitafoods 2023

Related tags Cognitive health beauty Women Probiotics botanicals mood Gut health Protein

Innovation themes seen on the exhibitor floor at Vitafoods Europe this week (May 9-11) included women's health, cognitive health, innovative formats, gut health, and beauty-from within.

Here is a whistle-stop tour of some of the innovations which exemplify these themes.

Innovative formats

"Instagrammable" capsules:

Lonza provided a fun twist on capsule formats with capsugel liquid-filled capsules. The ‘duocap’ capsule-in-capsule, means that the outer capsule can

Lonza capsules

be liquid or semi-solid, and the inner capsule can contain liquid, semi-solids, powder or beadlets. Joris Dewit, Executive Director and Head of Dosage Form Solutions and Ingredients at Lonza, said: “They’re intagrammable, can combine incompatible ingredients, and can come in many bespoke profiles.” 

Chewing gum to cut cravings:

Israeli startup Sweet Victory presented in the Startup Innovation Challenge introducing Gymnema Sylvestre extract in chewing gum format. With its glucose like molecules it works to block sugar receptors to curb cravings. The founders claim consumers need only chew on one piece of gum for a few minutes to reduce sugar cravings.

Coffee gummies:

And for those needing a pep-up, Israeli company TopGum has released high caffeine 'cappuccino gummies'. In addition to providing the full coffee sensory experience, TopGum's gummies deliver a functional dose of caffeine: Each serving of two coffee gummies contains 40 mg of caffeine, which is equivalent to a standard espresso shot. Eli Edri, TopGum's COO and VP of strategic partnerships said: "Over the last couple of years, we worked on the development of a state-of-the-art microencapsulation technology — called TopCaps — that is uniquely tailored for gummies. This innovative technology allows consumers to savour the flavour and aroma of coffee-on-the-go, while energising themselves with a single chewy treat."

Marshmallow collagen:

Essentia Protein Solutions showcased its Omnicol bovine collagen peptides in a marshmallow from. They note the concept is a nearly fat free treat providing 19 grams of collagen per 100 grams.

Cognitive health

Herbaland gummies

Calming gummies:

Herbaland calm & chill gummies for kids include Magnesium and Chamomile Extract and promise to help relieve restlessness and nervousness and relieve inflammatory conditions of the gastrointestinal tract. Consumers are directed to take two of the strawberry flavour gummies per day to add a little 'calm to their day'.

Meanwhile Finzelberg showcased their Concental gummies. Utilising the company's Sideritis scardica Greek tea extract, the gummies provide a tasty solution for increasing attention and reducing anxiety levels via the regulation of blood flow in the brain.

And Kerry created lemongrass-flavoured gummies with the firm's Sensoril Ashwagandha ingredient for a stress-relieving tasty supplement solution.

Chill out chocolate:

Providing an indulgent solution with calming benefits, Prinova  developed a high protein plant-based recovery hot chocolate concept, including AlphaTea, the firm's branded L-Theanine sourced from green tea extract, shown to reduce stress and anxiety levels.


Resveratrol has been found to improve brain functionality through SIRT1 activation and inflammation modulation, prevention of oxidative stress, and via regulation of some signalling pathways. This ingredient was spotlighted at many stands including Veri-te, where the team showcased a range of food and drink formats, including chocolate truffles. 


Novozymes OneHealth showcased its ProbioBrain ingredient, a probiotic for mental wellness featuring Bifidobacterium longum ​1714, targeting the gut-brain axis. Manel Berga, head of sales operations, told NutraIngredients: “Sleep, mood, and stress are of particular interest to us. And we see that continuing to gather interest in the industry. Brain health is a trend that is here to stay.” 

Low-stress sport:

brain and body

Discussing the importance of adding additional functional benefits to protein powders, Fonterra highlighted its 'Nutiani Body + Brain'

 range - in powder, drink and bar formats - offering protein alongside phospholipids to support cognition, focus and reduce stress.  Alex Williams, marketing manager Europe, told NutraIngredients: "We are seeing other protein powders on the market with cognitive health benefits and they are performing very well but this is the first protein powder with phospholipids."


Gut-skin axis:

ADM brought its VitaSkin capsules to the show, formulated to target skin vitality, while also supporting the gut-skin axis using a blend of probiotics, zinc and vitamins A and C.

Nutraceutical gummies:

Sirio created gummy solutions for the beauty-from-within consumer with two new products. Its Jumping Jacks gummy is a type II collagen-powered sports nutrition gummy for joint health. Sirio partnered with Lonza for the inclusion of its patented UC-II collagen which is effective at just 40 mg per day and backed by 11 clinical trials. Its Perfect Glow gummy is the "world’s first" full-spectrum (type I, II and III) collagen-based gummy for visible effects on skin elasticity, smoothness and glow. 

Gut health

Postbiotic gummies:

ADM concentrated on microbiome modulating solutions providing a range of scientifically backed benefits. Offering metabolic health benefits, ADM’s apple and blackcurrant Bio Trinity Gummies featured a combination of fiber, plant extracts and vitamin E. And with a 'healthy living' focus, ​the firm showed its balanced wellness Red Beat Walk beverage concept supporting weight management, skin health, energy, immune function and metabolic health with probiotics, green tea extract, fiber, botanicals and vitamins B and D.

Carob prebiotics:

Foodtech startup Carobway joined the show to spotlight its potential in the prebiotic space. One formulation under development is a prebiotic powder enriched with fibers and polyphenols that possess anti-inflammatory properties and support a healthy gut microbiome. Following bioavailability and bio-accessibility studies, the start-up will advance a series of microbiome studies to explore the effect of its prebiotic on human microbiota diversity and specific microbes.

Women’s health

HTC health menopause

Menopause gummies:

A number of exhibitors showed awareness of the growing interest in menopause supporting solutions, ncluding HTC who showcased  menopause gummies. The firm makes us of a range of hormone influencing ingredients including: starflower oil (aka borage oil) which is a rich source of gamma-linoleic acid (GLA); and Evening Primrose Oil, which is rich in omega-6 and there is some evidence to suggest it could help relieve hot flashes and the symptoms of premenstrual syndrome (PMS). 

Balancing botanicals:

Tilmans' brought its Pre-ms product to the show, combining evening primrose oil and lavender oil in capsule format to contribute to hormonal balance during the premenstrual period.

Hot flash relief treat:

Focusing on their Novasoy soy isoflavone concentrate, ADM produced a chocolate concept to deliver extracted genistein, an ingredient important for relief of hot flashes.


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