Novus International
Valuing Our Role
Part: 01
Valuing Partnerships
Part: 02
Valuing People, Passion & Purpose
Part: 03
Valuing Governance & Transparency
Part: 04

How Does Novus Partner for Health and Nutrition?

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Modeling Sustainable Development in New Zealand

Insights from Terese Mansell Specialty Ingredients Product Manager, Stratum Nutrition

“At Stratum Nutrition, we are always on the lookout for new ingredients that can contribute to human nutrition and help people achieve a better quality of life. I joined Stratum just as we were consolidating our partnership with Anagenix in New Zealand for bringing ACTAZIN™ to market and this has been my main role over the past couple of years. It’s been quite a journey with a key milestone in July 2012, when we signed an international distribution and partnership agreement with Anagenix. I have become enamoured with our kiwifruit ingredient and the way we have managed to achieve success in a relatively short time. ACTAZIN™ has exceeded all of our forecasts to date and is poised to become a truly global digestive health supplement with unique beneficial properties.


ACTAZIN™ is a new digestive supplement ingredient, manufactured from New Zealand’s own ‘superfruit,’ the kiwifruit, which has been clinically proven to support gut health by improving regularity and other long-term digestive health benefits. There is historical knowledge of the benefits of kiwi in food providing a wide variety of nutrients such as vitamins C, K, E, as well as potassium, magnesium and dietary fiber. Due to the beneficial prokinetic enzyme contained in kiwifruit, ACTAZIN™ has a unique prebiotic ability to selectively feed bacteria known to enhance a healthy gut. Also the high level of polyphenolics (phytonutrients and antioxidants) in New Zealand kiwifruit act as a prebiotic, supporting beneficial bacteria to maintain long-term digestive health.

I think that the launch of ACTAZIN™ could be a model for sustainable development. It starts with turning a local ingredient into a high-value product which generates zero waste – we use the flesh of the kiwifruit for ACTAZIN™ and the peel is routed for animal feed. We developed the ingredient using science and clinical research to exploit its beneficial properties and manufacture ACTAZIN™ using a gentle process which maintains its efficacy. The business supports the investment of the local Māori people and aligns with their values. And all this is in the framework of a private-public partnership with the New Zealand government, local experts and the Novus Stratum Nutrition team. ACTAZIN™ is not only a win for human health, it’s also a win for sustainability.”

Insights from Michele Raynor Director Product Research, Healthy Directions

“Our dietary supplement industry has grown into a very significant market with a wide variety of products available, a huge array of information and widespread availability.

Even grocery store shelves are lined with probiotics. People talk about the supplements they take and share information with friends and family. Even family physicians now are opening up to suggesting supplements with probiotics. This is a big market shift and it is going to continue. People want a solution to the challenges of aging, especially in the over-fifties age range, which is our prime market.

We were happy to take ACTAZIN™ and formulate it with probiotics into an effective product that has done very well, with a high rate of repeat purchases. Aside from the digestive properties of ACTAZIN™ and the scientific evidence that it is effective, we felt that it had a wonderful story. The fact that the product comes from New Zealand with its special climate advantages helps catch the attention of our customers. It’s a little exotic and people like that, but only if the product has effective quality and efficacy. This is what makes our customers trust what we offer.”

Insights from Melissa Yiannoutsos Chief Operations and Sales Officer, Anagenix, New Zealand

“I have spent more than a decade commercializing science for industrial, medical, biotechnology and food and beverage applications with New Zealand research institutes, universities, industry and individuals. Working in partnership to commercialize kiwifruit-derived products has been one of the most exciting developments for me and for Anagenix.

The attractive thing for us is a commitment to developing the branded ingredients which are inspired by nature and developed by science, in a way which is consistent with the Māori concept of ‘kaitiaki’ which refers to ‘guardianship of the land.’ We try to run our business in line with this – redeveloping ingredients from nature in a trustworthy and responsible way. There are many examples of how the Māori community has taken land ownership and agricultural capability and utilized them to move into high-value crops. We help by creating the right connections and building them into lasting partnerships with the scientific community, high-quality manufacturing sources and commercialization partners. Expanding high-value exports is critical for the New Zealand economy and a priority for the government. In fact, our first connection with Stratum Nutrition was during a New Zealand Trade and Enterprise forum. Since then, we have been able to move forward quickly through open discussion and a trusting partnership approach. We share the same values and also, we are delighted to help the unique New Zealand kiwifruit gain the global recognition it deserves!”


Advancing Oral Health with Probiotics

Insights from Ingomar Middelbos Manager, Specialty Products and Pet Market, Stratum Nutrition

“Our work in oral health has continued to expand and move forward and we see this as an important part of contributing to improving the health and the quality of life for many people. One of our key probiotic product ranges, BLIS®, recorded a major milestone, receiving a non-novel food opinion in Europe. It is non-novel because the probiotic strains in BLIS® based on Streptococcus salivarius were known to regulators due to uses in other food products in the past. We already are starting to see interest and have several customer developments with products in different forms in the pipeline in Europe that will be on the shelves during 2013.

A significant breakthrough for the BLIS K12® product was the publication of the full genome sequence during 2012. We saw the genome as the key to gaining regulatory acceptance based on trust in our product and our knowledge of the clear identity of the probiotic strains. Knowledge of the genome enables scanning for certain DNA sequences that are linked to pathogenicity or antibiotic resistance, which is a critical step in ensuring the safety profile of the product. Our investment in developing and publishing the genome gives us the edge on credibility, safety and consistency of our products over time.

In 2012, two critical research papers were published in Italy after trials in adults and children proved that BLIS K12® is very effective. Trials on sore throats in children age four to five found that supplements with BLIS K12® delivered a 92 percent reduction and ear infections were reduced by 42 percent. When I first saw the data, I asked, ‘Are you sure that these numbers are right?’ But, the science is there. This is a major advancement and can help child health significantly, improving the quality of life while reducing healthcare costs. In adults, we looked at sore throats only and got similar results. I think we are going to see BLIS® ingredients formulated into many different oral health care and functional food products in the coming months and years.”

Improving Joint Health

Micah Osborne Insights from Micah Osborne President, ESM Technologies, Stratum Nutrition


“Our biggest breakthrough this past year has been that one of our Canadian customers launched a mass market product in the U.S. that is carried in 8,400 Walgreen’s stores. This is a major step forward for advancing the contribution that natural eggshell-derived products can make in improving joint health for millions of individuals. Part of this breakthrough is based on the fact that we were able to achieve regulatory product licensing in Canada. In Canada, a license is issued for a finished product, not for its individual ingredients, so products have to be ready to launch before they can apply for regulatory approval. We actually have more than ten companies now working on products formulated with NEM® and we expect there to be more choices on the market in the coming year.

We also published a safety manuscript for NEM® in the technical journal, Food and Chemical Toxicology, comprised of many different peer-reviewed studies. Many companies in our industry don’t publish safety data and sometimes the research doesn’t meet scientific expectations. This published manuscript significantly helped the credibility of our product and advanced its approval.”

Insights from Frank Lucchetta Executive Vice President, Marketing, Jamieson Vitamins

“Each geographic region has its own trend nuances in this industry segment. Consumers want to fight the normal aging process. They value safe, natural alternatives and they will seek early interventions and prevention concepts to ensure optimum health. Consumers are not, however, willing to waste time and money on something that does not work or meet a product promise.”

“In bringing new products to market, we must meet consumer demand and expectations first and foremost. Secondly, we must meet our strict protocols for ingredients: purity, traceability, sustainability and clinical efficacy. These are the foundational starting points. Beyond this, the more obvious commercial aspects take hold: retailer demands/logistics, competitive landscape, media influence, consistent source of ingredient supply, exclusivity options and other proprietary opportunities, reduced cost and delivery format options. NEM® nutritional supplement is a good fit for our product portfolio as it meets a consumer trend need and our core foundational demands as an ingredient.”

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