In a joint statement, the companies said the alliance “creates strategic value for both companies through each company’s leading diet products that addresses wellness needs related to joint and digestive health.”
“Ahiflower Oil continues to proliferate rapidly in nutritional supplements in North America, so we appreciate the additional sales and customer support that Stratum puts at the fore as we develop novel product formulations that use the company’s proprietary ingredients,” said Andrew Hebard , Founder and CEO of Natures Crops International.
Stratum Nutrition will initially represent the Ahiflower oil supply for new customers in the human nutritional supplement markets in North America (US, Canada, Mexico). Existing consumer brands supplied by Natures Crops will continue to be supported directly by Natures Crops.
Building scientific knowledge, but a challenge in raising awareness.
Omega-3 oil, which is from the species Buglossoides arvensis, is a relatively new entrant in the omega-3 oil space.
It received an FDA letter of objection for its GRAS status in 2015. Scientific evidence has been gathered of the ingredient’s health benefits Study published in 2016This is evidence of the potential of ahiflower oil to accumulate omega-3 EPA up to four times higher than flaxseed oil because the plant is high in stearidonic acid (SDA), a precursor to EPA that is one metabolic step closer than that ALA, the omega -3 found in flaxseed oil. And a recent studySupported immune regulation and the ingredient’s anti-inflammatory properties.
As a vegetable oil, it picks up on the burgeoning trend for herbal products among US consumers.
“Since the launch of Ahiflower in spring 2015, we’ve seen good growth every quarter, both in new branded partner product launches and in existing products that have become more popular with consumers,” Hebard told NutraIngredients-USA.
“We have nearly 30 licensed brands in a growing portfolio that includes Genesis Today, Jarrow, Greens First, Clean Machine, MHP and Natural Traditions.”
However, Hebard said it was particularly difficult to generate awareness and interest among consumers as the omega-3 category is a category he sees as “highly fragmented” with “unnecessarily overly complex messaging”. .
Released in 2015, Ahiflower Oil is licensed for use in over 20 brands in North America, the UK and the EU. The oil also has FDA safe GRAS status, which allows it to be used in food and beverages.
“Most people have heard of omega, most know it’s good for you, but very few understand the different sources and types – yet most people are omega-3 deficient.”
Simplification of communication, addition of additional delivery formats.
Natures Crops International has developed food and ingredient formulations to greatly expand the uses of ahiflower oil, including powders, emulsions, and culinary oil blends, Hebard said.
“The trend towards fortifying foods with natural, functional ingredients is a good growth area for us. Marine and algae lipids can limit cost, smell, taste and rancidity when incorporated into food, ”he added.
“Ahiflower tastes closer to olive oil than fish oil and as a vegan it has a wide range of uses. This spring or summer, culinary oils and emulsions containing ahiflower oil will be available for customers interested in getting their daily dose of omegas by adding just a spoon to their favorite daily recipes. “
In addition to product development, the company will advance clinical trials with the support of its new partnership with Stratum Nutrition. “Our focus was on advancing human clinical trials and promoting Ahiflower as a vegan source of complete and balanced omegas so you can move, feel and look good,” added Hebard.
“There is clearly a disconnect between consciousness and consumption, and I think this is a marketing challenge. We believe that many consumers find all the acronyms and terms introduced into the omega-3 space confusing and boring. They prefer a simple message: “Safe, effective, sustainable and enjoyable to take.”