Manufacturers of infant milk formula in China will soon be able to access a unique range of prebiotic ingredients, following the approval of FrieslandCampina Ingredients’ production strain of 2’-Fucosyllactose (2’-FL). The green light from China’s MARA (Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs) paves the way for Aequival® 2’-FL, a human milk oligosaccharide ingredienti, to be launched in the world’s largest early-life nutrition (ELN) market. “Final nutrition fortifier” approval of Aequival® 2’-FL will mean FrieslandCampina Ingredients will soon become the only provider of both human milk oligosaccharides (HMOs) and galacto-oligosaccharides (GOS) in China. This united proposition is highly appealing to brand owners in the ELN sector thanks to the complementary benefits the two types of oligosaccharide may offer when combined.
“This is great news both for us and for our Chinese customers – current and future,” stated Cindy Zhao, general manager, FrieslandCampina Ingredients China, in the announcement. “The Chinese market has very specific circumstances that a combined GOS & HMO offering is the ideal response to. Here, health benefits are a significant priority for people selecting an infant milk formula: approximately 90 percent of parents say they are looking for them. For instance, gut health is a priority for 80 percent of parents of young children, and emerging scientific research is shedding a light on the gut health benefits that prebiotics like GOS and HMOs may have.”
Scientists from FrieslandCampina Ingredients have particularly explored the possible benefits of combining GOS and 2’-FL, inspired by the variety and diversity of structures that exist in human milk. For instance, in vitro research has shown that these two types of oligosaccharide stimulate the beneficial bacteria Bifidobacterium longum in a species-specific manner.ii This suggests there is a clear opportunity for Chinese infant milk formula brands to respond directly to parental concerns about gut health. Nearly 30 percent of Chinese parents already recognise that prebioticsiii is beneficial in this area.
2’-FL is an ingredient found in an increasing number of infant milk formula products in other parts of the world and is trusted by brand owners to deliver health benefits in infancy thanks to a growing body of research showing its value to infant health.
“From the point of final approval, Chinese customers will be able to purchase GOS and 2’-FL from one trusted and experienced supplier with a long heritage in the Chinese infant nutrition market,” Zhao continued. “In doing so, they can increase the diversity of oligosaccharide structures in their formulations and thereby unlock exciting new opportunities to differentiate their products, add more value for consumers and attract more parents to their brands.”
About FrieslandCampina Ingredients
FrieslandCampina Ingredients is a leader in proteins and prebiotics, addressing the growing need for innovative nutritional solutions to the world’s health and well-being challenges. Its drive is to get the right ingredients to customers to help them create highly nutritious, sustainable applications to help people with special dietary needs and preferences get the most out of life, always.
Powered by 1,700 passionate specialists, FrieslandCampina Ingredients operates globally across the Early Life Nutrition, Active, Performance, Medical and Cell Nutrition market segments. The company has regional sales offices in the Netherlands, the United States, Singapore, China, and Brazil. It reported combined sales of €1.65 billion in 2022. For additional information, please visit: www.frieslandcampinaingredients.com.
FrieslandCampina Ingredients is part of Royal FrieslandCampina N.V. The dairy company daily provides millions of consumers throughout the world with dairy products containing valuable nutrients from milk. The company is fully owned by Zuivelcoöperatie FrieslandCampina U.A., with 15,137 dairy farmers in the Netherlands, Belgium, and Germany as members. Its annual turnover amounted to €14.1 billion in 2022. FrieslandCampina has locations in 31 countries and exports to more than one hundred countries worldwide. In 2022, FrieslandCampina employed an average of 21,715 employees (FTEs). Its head office is located in the Netherlands.
i Not from human milk
ii Lindner C, Looijesteijn E, Dijck H van, et al. Infant Fecal Fermentations with Galacto-Oligosaccharides and 2′-Fucosyllactose Show Differential Bifidobacterium longum Stimulation at Subspecies Level. Children. 2023;10(3):430. doi:10.3390/children100304
iii Gibson GR, et al. (2017) The scientific definition of a prebiotic is “A substrate that is selectively utilized by host microorganisms conferring a health benefit.” Expert consensus document: The International Scientific Association for Probiotics and Prebiotics (ISAPP) consensus statement on the definition and scope of prebiotics. Nat Rev Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2017 Aug;14(8):491-502.