Among the five new products launched, four are dietary supplements: Organic Vitamin D Drops, Organic Night Time Gripe Water, Organic Multivitamin Drops, and Organic Iron Drops (the fifth is a chest and foot rub).
The iron drops and night-time gripe water is set for distribution in Walgreens throughout the country this month.
Starting with gripe water
Wellements was founded in 2000, and launched its first baby product in 2007. Today, the brand focuses solely on organic infant and toddler nutrition, dropping its other categories in the last decade.
“We started with one product, the original gripe water, which is a time-tested remedy for cholic, teething, hiccups, gas,” Ryan Petrosky, CEO of Wellements, told NutraIngredients-USA at the recent Natural Products Expo West show in Anaheim, CA.
Demand for the product grew, and in 2016, the company launched a probiotic-infused variety, containing Sabinsa’s branded Bacillus coagulans Lactospore.
“We added the probiotics to the product because there is now a subset of consumers looking for probiotic products. They’re figuring out that a lot of GI stress in infants is about not having a good balance of the gut flora,” he said.
The newest gripe water iteration, announced at last weekend's Expo West show, differs from the original in that it contains lemon balm and passion flower to help promote sleep.
Formulating for children
With almost 10 years of exclusively making liquid and oil supplement products targeting the infant and toddler age, Petrosky said that a big challenge is “They may not be able to talk, especially a younger child or a toddler, but they will spit it out if it doesn’t taste good.”
Additionally, “consistency, in other words it can’t be too goopy or too runny because it could get messy—I would say viscosity and flavor are some of the things we need to pay attention to above and beyond we’re giving them the right stuff at the right amounts.”
To overcome this, the company has to pair scientific R&D with toddler focus groups.
“We’re all parents ourselves and we all have newborns, we also have key stakeholders with children in the age demographic [we’re targeting], so we test it on them too and I’m happy to say, nobody spit it out.”