Rice-based excipients can boost organic, non-GMO claims for supplements

By Hank Schultz contact

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Genetically modified organism, Organic food

Rice-based excipients can boost organic, non-GMO claims for supplements
Non GMO product positioning continues to gain importance in the marketplace, but the search for compliant excipients still complicates the claim for supplements.  A suite of ingredients that will be on display next week in Chicago can help.

Ribus, a company based in St. Louis, will be featuring its rice-based ingredients at the International Food Technologists trade show in Chicago starting on Sunday.  The company’s milling technology has allowed it to offer rice bran-based excipients that substitute for non-organic lubrication, anti-caking and flow agents in food and supplement formulations.

Excipients have been seen as among the primary stumbling blocks for both organic and non GMO claims in supplements and foods.  Organic standards allow for non-organic trace ingredients to be used in situations where no organic alternatives exist.  In the case silicon dioxide, a widely-used anti-caking agent, an organic alternative now can be used.

“I spent about seven years going through the process with the National Organic Program, showing how our Nu-flow ingredient could work as a replacement for silicon dioxide,” Steve Peirce, CEO of Ribus, told NutraIngredients-USA.

“I would say in almost all supplements—whether its a powder, a tablet or a capsule—virtually all of them use an anti caking agent so they are free flowing so they will run at high speed through the equipment. We are dealing with the flow characteristics of the products, whether the issue is hydroscopic or if the material is oily,”​ he said.

Peirce said Ribus has chosen specifically to source its rice raw material only from US-grown crops, not only for quality assurance, but also to make sure that no cross-contamination could occur that could cloud a non-GMO positioning.

US leads in non GMO rice

“Everything that we produce comes from US produced rice. There is no GMO rice grown in the US, and even the EU does not require GMO testing for rice that is coming from this country.  It is a growing interest; there are consumers who would prefer to know that a food has been genetically engineered and there are those who want to avoid it. For those consumers, the safest choice is to purchase organic,”​ Peirce said.

While many experts in the supplement field have said that a “made with organic” claim is the most likely level that most supplement manufacturers could achieve, given the processing constraints, Peirce said the excipients his company offers, which include Nu-Flow for anti caking purposes, and Nu-Rice as a lubrication aid, a fully organic claim is now doable.

“We have got companies both in the US and Europe that are making 100% organic tablets using both Nu-Rice and Nu-Flow,” he said. “The issue of lubrication is an important element. Typically producers have used magnesium stearate for this purpose.  Nu-Rice can substitute for this, to make a tablet pop out easily from a press or to make a capsule go together easily and hold,”​ Peirce said.

Ribus will show its rice bran-based ingredients, which also include a couple more specifically for food processing and baking, at its booth, no. 2854.

Related topics: Policy, All Asia-Pacific, Food safety

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