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Probiotic technology enters Australia and New Zealand

By Kacey Culliney , 27-Oct-2011

Belgian firm Vésale Pharma brings its probiotic technology to Australia and New Zealand for the first time, through a new alliance.

The deal between Vésale and consultants Third Lever, will see its probiotic encapsulation technology launched across the two countries as part of the company’s global market strategy.

Johan Quintens, vice president of Vésale Pharma, told FoodNavigator-Asia that the InteliCaps technology is aimed at functional foods and supplements.

He said that it can also be applied across a number of dosage forms including tablets, liquids and soft capsules.

It allows combination with other active ingredients as well, such as high doses of vitamin C, zinc and other minerals and omega-3, he added.

InteliCaps has been a two-year project for Vésale that was launched in January of this year. In September a new production plant was opened in Belgium to manufacture the technology at a commercial level and distribute to European clients.

This latest agreement will give Aussi and Kiwi manufacturers access to the technology for the first time since its launch.

Protecting probiotics

Quintens said: “Probiotics have a poor survival rate when not stored correctly. When you encapsulate them, there is a much better resistance to higher temperatures and humidity, and survival rates are much better.”

He said that Intelicaps micro-encapsulation technology acts as a protective barrier against environmental conditions.

The barrier also works through the gut, allowing a full dose of the probiotic into the intestines: “the probiotics arrive 100% alive in the intestinal channel,” he said.

“This has two very pleasant implications. Firstly, it increases the activity of the product… and secondly, during production, the manufacturer is able to use fewer ingredients to achieve definite effectiveness,” he added.

Vésale is currently focused on clinical and in-vitro trials to prove these two features.

Innovative demands in Australia and New Zealand

Steve Ward, managing director of consultants Third Lever, said: “We have been working with Vésale in the local region on the regulatory and documentation side of the product, as well as formulation and stability trials.”

He said: “We believe there is a real desire for innovative technology, materials, formulation and packaging, particularly in the Australian and New Zealand markets.”

InteliCaps will also have appeal as it is a cost-effective technology, not much more expensive than lyophilised powder, he added.

Quintens said: “Our ultimate goal is to have a worldwide network of agents promoting and distributing our products and taking care of the customers and the business.”

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