Infant formulas traditionally contain significantly more protein than human milk and this can lead to gastrointestinal discomfort issues in infants, such as colic and constipation, regurgitation and stool issues. Arla aims to reduce these issues by altering the amount and types of proteins used.
The new low protein concept contains alpha-lactalbumin, which is the most abundant protein in human milk bringing the formula's protein levels closer to that of human milk.
It also includes whey protein hydrolysates, which are high-quality proteins that have been broken down by enzymes, effectively meaning they have been pre-digested.
The new formula concept incorporates Lacprodan ALPHA-10, a whey protein concentrate with a minimum level of 41% alpha-lactalbumin as a proportion of total protein content; and Lacprodan IF-3070, a partially hydrolysed whey protein (DH 9-15) with a mixture of small and larger peptides.
Arla says the concept product has been created to showcase potential optimised comfort applications. It contains 9.7g of protein per 100g serving and has a protein to energy ratio of 1.9g/100kcal.
Gut comfort for health
Gut comfort is generally considered to be important for infant well-being and sleep and infant discomfort problems are the most common reason for parents to switch between formulas to find a solution to their infant’s gastrointestinal issues (Berseth et al. 2009. Nutr J. 8: 27). The number of global launches of infant formula products with on-pack messages relating to comfort has risen by a CAGR of 11.6% over the past five years, according to Innova Market Insights 2018.
Arla Foods Ingredients
Arla is the world’s first commercial producer of alpha-lactalbumin and one of the largest producers of alpha-lactalbumin and whey protein hydrolysates. Its infant nutrition ingredients use milk that is non-GMO, Kosher and Halal-certified, and free of annatto.
The firm unveiled a new generation of whey hydrolysates for the sports nutrition market in 2017 reasoning that these 'pre-digested' proteins could get to work faster and help muscles recover quicker.