Persona CEO Jason Brown on state of personalized nutrition
One of those companies is vitamin pack pioneer Persona. Their CEO and founder Jason Brown recently sat down to speak with NutraIngredients-USA.
In 1998, Brown built a company called Custom Nutrition Services, which was later sold to DrugStore.com. More recently, Brown started Persona in 2016, which was known as Vitamin Packs at that time. Nestlé Health Science added Persona to its Atrium Professional Brands business last summer.
“We’ve seen tremendous change over the course of the last 20 years. In technology, communication, and people’s willingness to buy online,” explained Brown. Persona is a personalized daily vitamin and supplement subscription that is tailored to each individual based on a detailed questionnaire.
“At Persona, we have five MDs, 12 nutritionists and a doctor of pharmacy all on the same team. They fully developed a questionnaire that is based on your family health history, your lifestyle, the food you eat, and very importantly the medications you might be prescribed.”
Brown said one of the most crucial aspects of the business is understanding drug-nutrient interactions. The Persona team has developed a database that cross-references over 2,500 drugs that interact with nutritional supplements.
Another important factor is bioavailability. “You’ll notice at Persona we have a lot of softgels. We have a large number of liquid inside of a capsule, and we’re growing that. We found that the liquid formula is easier for people to take and secondarily, it melts inside your body faster and in a way that will stay with you instead of going out.”
Right now, Brown said his team is working diligently with scientists and proven formulators on finding new and fascinating ingredients around the globe that they can incorporate into their system.
“We have 5 trillion different combinations. And we don’t sell vitamin packs. We don’t sell like a box for men and a box for women. We sell the ability to put your personalized ingredients inside a pack specifically made for you.”