The facility, to be based in Valencia, Spain, will be co-located alongside ADM’s flavour production facility also in Valencia in a move, which places the firm in an “unparalleled position,” according to the firm’s chief strategy and innovation officer.
“Our new Valencia facility will feature leading-edge technology and dramatically enhance our ability to meet fast-growing demand for products and solutions from nature designed to target the microbiome and help improve metabolic health,” says Ian Pinner, who is also the president of ADM’s Health & Wellness division.
“Consumers today are increasingly focusing on the foundational role food plays in supporting health and wellness, and our continued investment in these growth areas ensures that ADM is perfectly positioned to meet their needs.”
Meeting gut demand
In a statement, ADM says the facility will produce a number of probiotics and postbiotics — using ADM technology — to meet growing demand for new solutions for healthy weight management, skin health, immune health, gut health, oral health, fertility among other areas.
In response to increasing demand for microbiome-focused products, the firm’s activities within this space include the acquisition of Probiotics International Limited--known under its umbrella brand Protexin.
The UK-based manufacturer of natural healthcare and probiotic supplements for human, pet and production-animal use was purchased in a €155m (£185m) deal back in August 2018.
Prior to this, ADM took control of Biopolis – a provider of microbial technologies – in a deal that saw them acquire 90% of the shares of the Valencia-based company.
ADM’s confidence in its probiotic supplements were put to the test earlier this year with a clinical trial looking into the effects of using a food supplement containing live microbial strains in high risk COVID-19 patients.
Here, Gasteel Plus, a live microbial probiotic-based food supplement formulated using ADM probiotic strains (Bifidobacterium longum CECT7347, Bifidobacterium animalis subsp. lactis CECT9950 and Lactobacillus rhamnosus CNCM-I4036) as well as nutrients vitamin D, selenium and zinc, were selected in this interventional trial.
Working with the Hospital de Sagunto, the trial, which commenced in March 2020, had more than 75 subjects at the last count participating in the trial.
Botanicals, oils and fibres
“More than 75 patients admitted to the hospital with COVID-19 have already been enrolled in the trial, and are giving regular blood, stool, urine and nasopharyngeal exudate samples to measure changes in immune parameters and other factors such as viral load,” said Dr Xavier Cortés, gastroenterologist at Hospital de Sagunto.
“Using these indicators, we will assess the efficacy of Gasteel Plus as an adjunct solution to support the health of the elderly population, who are especially vulnerable to this viral infection.”
“We aim to expand the reach of this study to 100 patients, while exploring the potential beneficial effects of additional ingredients such as botanical extracts, oils and fibres in separate pre-clinical studies,” added Francisco Climent, ADM’s health & wellness managing director, EMEAI.
“Through this research, we hope to create more unique blends of our health and wellness ingredients that may help support the health of those for whom COVID-19 poses the greatest threat.”