SUBSCRIBE

Breaking News on Food & Beverage Development - EuropeUS edition | APAC edition

Exclusive interview

Beneo board: “Let us not forget that functional food responds to a clear demand of the consumer”

By Shane Starling , 20-Dec-2011
Last updated on 20-Dec-2011 at 14:42 GMT2011-12-20T14:42:45Z

Beneo board: “Let us not forget that functional food responds to a clear demand of the consumer”

In the first part of this exclusive interview, Beneo Group executive board member, Yves Servotte, explains how European Union health claim rules have informed strategic thinking at one of Europe’s biggest and most vocal ingredient vendors.

Servotte explained why his company will continue to battle for change in the interpretation of the nutrition and health claims regulation (NHCR), a regulation whose intentions he believes, “are not necessarily in line with the results”.

“It was a good initiative by the European Community to bring some law and order in the health claims and with the results that we have today it is clear that we have to adjust here and there a part of our strategy,” he reflected.

“What we definitely will not change is our belief in health and functional food products. We believe we have excellent studies demonstrating the advantages of our ingredients in the gut healthy area. But on the other hand we will cope with the legislation and adjust our communication until we have new files applied in Europe.”

He said establishing the Beneo Institute in late 2009 to share nutrition science developments and scrutinise regulatory insights in the food sector was part of the long view the Belgian firm took of the changing face of the European industry, and its role within it.

“It was a strategic decision by the company that we want to be an active player in the world of functional foods. Secondly it was also a clear decision that we are aware that in order to develop this market of functional food that a lot of efforts are still necessary.”

“…there is still time needed for further discussion…”

It has realised that a lot of those efforts need to be in the area of communication, of raising its own voice and that of the industry – of engaging in lobbying.

“It is clear that between the stakeholders there is still time needed for further discussion,” Servotte said.

We are of the opinion that the intentions of the legislation are not necessarily in line with the results. And so we will be a constructive partner.”

“We will work with the legislators, consumers and other companies wanting to be active in functional food and making sure that we find the compromise which is on one hand protecting the consumer, but on the other hand making possible that innovation has a chance in the food industry and functional food is clearly one of those domains where the food industry is waiting for. Let us not forget that functional food responds to a clear demand of the consumer.”

“We have issues like obesity, like constipation, where people in the industrialised world are looking for adapted food products. That’s what it’s all about and that’s what we want to contribute to.”

Related products

Sustainability and farming: SVZ Ingredients

What does sustainability mean to you?

Successful sustainability initiatives need to consider how farmers work and think, and involve co-operation...

Cornelius’ future suite-smelling as new lab opens for business

Cornelius’ future suite-smelling as new lab opens for business

Darren Spiby, Joy Thomas

CEO, Business technical development manager, Cornelius

From 'good sugar' to reformulation R&D: The companies that welcome sugar taxes

From 'good sugar' to reformulation R&D: The companies that welcome sugar taxes

A sugar tax might be bad news for some manufacturers but for others it's...

Video: If Donald Trump becomes US president, would it be good for your business?

Video: If Donald Trump becomes US president, would it be good for your business?

Presidential hopeful Donald Trump has vowed to bring back jobs to America by ripping...

Trends in fats and oils: It's all about minimal processing, novel ingredients & changing the plant's genetic profile

Trends in fats and oils: It's all about minimal processing, novel ingredients & changing the plant's genetic profile

Consumers are confused over the healthiness of saturated fats, worried about chemical contaminants in...

Lycored survey says consumers will pay more for natural colors

Lycored survey says consumers will pay more for natural colors

Christiane Lippert

Head of marketing (food), Lycored

Heard of himanthalia? Dutch start-up aims to replace carb-heavy pasta with seaweed

Heard of himanthalia? Dutch start-up aims to replace carb-heavy pasta with seaweed

Himanthalia - or sea spaghetti - may not be commonly known. But as a...

'It's still an attractive market': How are companies overcoming political instability in Turkey?

'It's still an attractive market': How are companies overcoming political instability in Turkey?

At the crossroads of east and west, Turkey offers huge promise but given the...

UK sugar tax: The big questions

UK sugar tax: The big questions

The UK has announced a tax on sugar-sweetened beverages. But how hard will it...

FiE 2015: Our best bits

FiE 2015: Our best bits

Our teams of journalists were out in force at Food Ingredients Europe (FiE) last...

New tech on EFSA’s horizon: Crowdsourcing and cyber assistants

New tech on EFSA’s horizon: Crowdsourcing and cyber assistants

New technology like crowdsourcing and artificial intelligence computers is the future of risk assessment,...

Lab meat, plant proteins and insects: Which alternative proteins will feed the world?

Lab meat, plant proteins and insects: Which alternative proteins will feed the world?

The quest for alternatives to animal-derived proteins has led to a huge amount of...

Food firms should prepare for pre-recession spending

Prepare for pre-recession spend – top economist

Food manufacturers should prepare for a positive three years ahead, as the changing economy...

Creepy proteins will be hot

New proteins are creeping on trend

Alternative proteins are a “hot area” of interest and products such as sandwich spreads...

Salt reduction not a priority for UK consumers: LoSalt survey

Salt reduction not a priority for UK consumers, finds LoSalt survey

Caroline Klinge

sales and marketing manager, LoSalt

‘Nice wine, no corkscrew?’ Mirabeau En Provence wins 8m+ YouTube views

‘Nice wine, no corkscrew?’ Mirabeau En Provence solution strikes YouTube gold with 8 million+ views

Mirabeau En Provence owner Stephen Cronk says the desire for a direct consumer connection...

DSM claims craft brewer interest in gluten-free beer enzyme

DSM claims craft brewer interest in gluten-free beer enzyme

DSM Food Specialities claims that, far from being cautious, craft brewers are embracing the...

Smoothie brand Froosh warns of ‘social washing’ within supply chain

Smoothie brand Froosh warns of ‘social washing’ on supply chain sustainability

Scandinavia’s top-selling smoothie manufacturer Froosh has called for ‘trade not aid’ in developing countries...

Key Industry Events