Larex praised by market analyst for FiberAid innovation

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Related tags: Dietary fiber

Market analyst Frost & Sullivan has awarded its 2004 Product
Innovation award to Larex for the development of soluble prebiotic
Arabinogalactan (AG) FiberAid.

The award is presented annually to a company judged by Frost & Sullivan analysts to have demonstrated innovation through the launching of a line of products based on emerging technology.

The analysts carry out a series of interviews with all market participants and carried out secondary and technology research to build up a picture of product launches, features and modifications and R&D.

"Larex is undoubtedly the market leader in the AG segment,"​ said research analyst Haricharan Desai, drawing attention to the company's 20,000 square foot manufacturing facility with the capacity to produce eight million pounds of the product each year.

"Its focus on product innovation and leadership is noteworthy and deserves recognition."

FiberAid AG is a prebiotic fiber that can be added to food and beverage products to boost their fiber content. It is said to have a beneficial effect on the gastrointestinal system, slowly fermenting to increase beneficial microflora like lactobacilli and bifidobacteria and decrease endogenous pathogenic bacteria.

A branched polysaccharide, AG is extracted from western larch (L. occidentalis) and tamarack larch trees using the company's patented water-wood-and-steam process. Larex works in collaboration with several timber companies and the by-products of the process are used in the manufacture of wood products.

"Larex's manufacturing facility is 'current Good Manufacturing Practice' (cGMP)-audited with a superior rating from the American Institute of Baking,"​ said Desai.

The soluble, tasteless and odorless ingredient is generally recognized as safe (GRAS) for food applications and has been recognized by the FDA as a source of dietary fiber.

Larex counts Kraft, Pepsi, Coke, Procter & Gamble and Johnson & Johnson amongst clients that have used AG in their products and delivery systems. According to the company, FiberAid can be incorporated into 8oz beverages or single food servings to account for 25 percent of the daily reference value of fiber (25 grams based on a 2,000 calorie per day diet).

The American Heart Association estimates that the average daily intake of fiber amongst adult Americans is just 15 grams.

There are two types of fiber, both of which have an important part to play in a healthy diet.

Soluble fiber, occurring naturally in oats, beans, peas, rice bran, barley and citrus fruits, has been shown to help lower cholesterol. Insoluble fiber is found in most grains, green vegetables, carrots, cauliflower and apple skin and has an important role to play in bowel function.

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