Doctor’s Best betting that clear fish oil will help its omega-3s line shine

By Hank Schultz

- Last updated on GMT

Doctor’s Best betting that clear fish oil will help its omega-3s line shine

Related tags: Omega-3 fatty acid, Omega-3 pufas, Omega-3 fish oil, Omega-3 market

Supplement brand holder Doctor’s Best is betting that clarity can be a differentiator in the fish oil space as it debuts a new line of omega-3 softgels.

Dubbed Purified & Clear Omega 3 Fish Oil​, the product is based on a highly refined anchovy oil produced by Golden Omega at its plant in Chile near the anchovy fishing grounds in the eastern Pacific Ocean. Golden Omega claims that the refining process to get to a virtually clear oil also boosts the purity by removing unwanted compounds from the product.

That clarity, which supports the purity message, will play well with the consumer base of Doctor’s Best, said product manager Harry Penn.

“Doctor’s Best is a science based brand and we have a lot of consumers who are very well informed. They look at what’s on the label and they read the science data sheets,” ​Penn told NutraIngredients-USA. 

Clarity as differentiator

Penn said the new line of oils will help Doctor’s Best differentiate its omega-3s offering. While omega-3s overall have been one of the biggest categories of dietary supplement ingredients worldwide for several decades, the sector is crowded with brands, each seeking a way to capture and defend market share.

At the lower end, it’s all about price, and Penn said that’s not where Doctor’s Best wants to play.

“We have a lot of anecdotal information about how people are looking for the purest forms of omega-3s. The more yellow the oil is, the more likely it is to be oxidized. People can SEE the quality of our oil,”​ he said.

Golden Omega debuted the clear or almost clear grades of oils more than a year ago and highlighted them at the Vitafoods trade show in Geneva in May 2017. Penn said to his knowledge this is the first time a clear fish oil has been offered in a dietary supplement. There have been some clear oils used in pharmaceutical omega-3 products, he said.

Penn said that Golden Omega’s patented refining techniques yield an extremely clean oil as well as one that’s clear. It’s also an oil in the mid-concentrate space, delivering 800 mg of EPA and 400 gm of DHA per 2 gram serving, or about a 60% concentration.

Burps question still out there 

Some marketers in the fish omega-3s space have argued that the purer and fresher the oil, the fewer the fishy burps, which is a consumer experience hurdle for the category. It’s the oxidation products in the oil that cause the burps, or so the story goes.

In keeping with Doctor’s Best’s science-backed message, Penn said without hard data on the subject he couldn’t say whether that’s true for the Golden Omega material.

“We would like to think the higher purity level should help with the fishy burps but we can’t guarantee that. That’s more of a personal issue for consumers. Some people have problems with that, where others don’t,”​ he said.

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