The partnership is part of Nutress’ international growth strategy, the company said, which has already seen a similar deal in the DACH region of Germany, Austria and Switzerland.
Azelis will distribute Nutress’ Chlorella sorokiniana and Chlorella vulgaris strains in fresh IQF (individually quick frozen) pellets, dried flakes, dried sheets and powder applications.
Reiner Smit, CEO of Nutress, said it partnered with Azelis because of what it called the company’s dynamic approach and in-depth understanding of the region’s markets.
“Nutress is excited to be working directly with the Azelis Benelux team as the company has a strong track record for bringing the highest quality products to market globally, combined with a dedicated local focus and closeness to customers,” Smit said.
The time is now…
Steven Swinnen, managing director of Azelis Benelux, said customers in the area will greatly benefit from wider access to Nutress’ algae.
“The time to engage in algae for the food, feed and pharma industry is now,” Swinnen said.
“At the junction of commodities and specialties we will focus on bringing Nutress’ superior algae to our current food, health and pet food client base.”
Anneke Roes, communication officer for Nutress, told us heightened consumer awareness about food origins and sustainability was driving interest in foodstuffs like algae.
“We hope to bridge the gap between speciality supplements and good food.
“Algae can be one solution to the problem of feeding the projected global population in 2050 of nine billion people.”
Statistics from research firm Mintel show that in Europe since January 2010 about 29,000 algae food and drink ingredients have been launched. Nearly half (46%) of these new products were introduced to the market since January 2014.
By comparison 50 new products using the Chlorella vulgaris algae strain were released since January 2010. Within this, 46% were introduced between January and October 2015 inclusive, illustrating an increase in adoption of the strain.
A culture change
The new partnership follows Nutress’ announcement in March 2015 of a distribution deal for Germany, Austria and Switzerland with Harke Pharma.
The deal was made with the aim of overcoming business culture differences between the Netherlands, where Nutress is based, and the three countries served by Harke Pharma. It also targeted increased new product development.
“The development of products within any market always takes time and that’s the same to develop first hand contacts within food companies,” Roes said.
In the same month Nutress announced it would start producing Chlorella vulgaris, its second closed-system strain, in addition to production of Chlorella sorokiniana, both of which Azelis will distribute as part of the new partnership deal.
Azelis and Nutress will present the partnership at the Fi Europe 2015 exhibition, which runs from 1 to 3 December in Paris, France.
The distribution agreement comes into immediate effect.