Omevital, which Cognis plans to showcase at Health Ingredients Europe in Frankfurt next month, will add omega-3 fatty acids to the company's existing line for the first time. Up until now flagship products for the German manufacturer have included: Tonalin conjugated linoleic acid, Vegapure plant sterols and sterol esters as well as Xangold lutein esters.
Cognis is expanding into a market that has boomed in recent years on the ever rising wave of evidence that points to the health benefits of omega-3 fatty acids. And by branding the ingredients, the group is likely to give itself an edge.
Frost and Sullivan has predicted that the omega-3 market will grow at rates of 8 per cent on average to 2010.
"There is an increasing demand for omega-3, especially for those of marine-origin, globally," Petra Mueller, global product line manager for Omevital told NutraIngredients.com.
Marine sources of omega-3 are higher in the more bioavailable longer chain fatty acids, EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid). Plant sources like flax seed are heavier in the shorter long-chain fatty acid ALA (alpha-linolenic acid) - a precursor to DHA that has to be converted by the body before it can be used.
Numerous studies have linked an adequate consumption of DHA to the promotion of brain, eye and heart health, while EPA has been linked to anti-inflammatory benefits.
Cognis' omega-3 ingredients will be available in different concentrations for different applications, from dietary supplements to functional foods.
"There are several high potency grades, in ethyl ester and triglyceride forms, with different EPA/DHA balances and concentrations up to 60 per cent combined EPA and DHA," said Mueller of Omevital.
Cognis' strategy has been to expand into more ingredients areas as well as to offer more services to clients.
"We want to be a one stop shop," US Cognis vice president David Eckert recently told NutraIngredients-USA.com at SupplySide West.
The company said it will continue to work with Napro Pharma's omega-3 clients.
"The product launch programme will be 'rolled out' region by region, starting with the European launch at HiE in Frankfurt," said Mueller.
The German group announced plans to buy Napro Pharma in May. Details of the financial transaction were not disclosed.