How Does Interest in the Microbiome Translate into Demand for Digestive and Immune Health Products?
An ever-expanding expanding body of research is revealing the role of the microbiome in supporting digestive and immune health. Because our “gut brain” influences both digestive and immune health, certain probiotic stains may also have a positive effect on both healthy digestive and immune function, helping to support overall wellness. As awareness of the value of maintaining a healthy microbiome has grown, so has public interest and demand for research supported probiotic ingredients that simplify choice and help manufacturers provide products with the benefits consumers seek.
In this guide, we explore:
- Why research supported probiotic ingredients hold the key to successful formulation
- Trending research in probiotic ingredients
- Opportunities for probiotic formulations for digestive health
Interest in the Gut Microbiome Drives Demand for Digestive Health Products
In 2019, Kerry, the makers of BC3o™, surveyed over 11,000 health-conscious consumers in 14 countries. In just one example of this level of awareness, around eight in ten Americans perceived that research supported probiotic ingredients provide digestive health benefits.
What’s more, it’s been suggested that the future of this trend might lie in understanding the two-way relationship between the gut microbiota and what we consume. Understanding the importance of the microbiome has been identified as one of the top trends in health and nutrition for 2020.
Research into the gut microbiome and its connection to overall health is one of the most challenging, but exciting, aspects of digestive wellness. ~ Maria Marco, PhD, Professor of Food Science and Technology, University of California-Davis and Scientific Advisor to the Kerry Health and Nutrition Institute
Research into the gut microbiome and its connection to overall health is one of the most challenging, but exciting, aspects of digestive wellness.
~ Maria Marco, PhD, Professor of Food Science and Technology, University of California-Davis and Scientific Advisor to the Kerry Health and Nutrition Institute
Digestive Health Linked to Immune Health
Similarly, it’s been suggested that focus on the gut microbiome is a growing trend in research supported probiotic ingredients as it relates to the future of immune health products. Because digestive health is linked to immune health, consumer interest is translating into proactive behaviors around the world.
Demand for More Information
Consumers often report that they are confused about the health claims made by brands, and there is evidence that the desire for greater clarity is increasing due to recent global events.
Since the pandemic, nearly two thirds of consumers (64%) say they will now pay more attention to nutritional benefit claims.
Consumers in these regions also seek more information on claims:
- Africa/Middle East: 51%
- APAC: 49%
- Europe: 48%
- North America: 53%
- South America: 65%
The Probiotic Solution
Consumers understand that probiotics can help keep their systems running smoothly and manufacturers are incorporating them into a growing range of everyday foods and beverages.
But not all probiotics are created equal. Strain differentiation is not just important; it’s vital, because the benefits of a probiotic depend on it.
BC30™ (Bacillus coagulans GBI-30, 6086) is a patented probiotic that makes it easy for consumers to do their homework. It is supported by over 25 published, clinical, pre-clinical and biomarker research papers showing that it offers a range of benefits for both digestive and immune health.
BC30 can help manufacturers formulate food and beverage products that help maintain digestive- and immune-health benefits from production to consumption, even in harsh environments like the gut microbiome.
Garden of Flavor®, part of an emerging category of juices with probiotic benefits supported by research, created its Appleade with the addition of BC30. Because BC30 is a hardy, spore-forming probiotic, it can survive processes like HPP and ensure the delivery of the right quantities of probiotics to confer benefits.
Year-on-year growth of launches of fruit snacks formulated with research supported probiotic ingredients that provide both digestive and immune health benefits is at a staggering 57%. Factors driving this growth include the demand for “portable nutrition” like Mariani’s® Probiotic Prunes formulated with BC30. BC30’s shelf stability helps functional fruit snacks maintain their benefits over the life of the product.
Year-over-year growth of launches of hot teas with both digestive and immune health claims is currently 38%. Recent examples of launches include Vahdam® Teas India’s Digestion Superfoods Elixir, a tea with the research supported probiotic ingredient BC30, turmeric, ginger, and other botanicals.
The Research is in: BC30™ Provides Health Benefits Consumers Want
While it’s true that the future may be uncertain, taking steps to protect overall health is always a good bet. And as the link between digestive health and immunity becomes increasingly clear, the gut microbiome is a likely path to general well-being. Probiotics are leading the way by helping to support gut health.
When it comes to probiotic choice, characteristics like hardiness and stability, as well as research support make BC30 a great option for manufacturers to offer the benefits of probiotics in everyday foods and beverages. Choosing products formulated with BC30 means consumers can be confident they are selecting products with scientifically substantiated benefits.
Kerry Proprietary Research, 2019
Kerry Health and Nutrition Institute; “Ten Key Health and Nutrition Trends of This Year”
Kerry Health and Nutrition Institute, “Immunity Ingredients at a Glance: Probiotics”