SupplySide West Podcast: AI’s impact on product innovation

How artificial intelligence will support the development of targeted healthy aging products

Heather Granato, VP, Partnerships & Sustainability

September 26, 2018

Artificial intelligence (AI) may bring to mind images from science fiction movies and learning computers. However, in the last few years, multi-neural networks have been actively put to work in recognizing data, exponentially expanding the potential of technology to augment human investigations into ways to improve health and lifespan. In the lead-in to SupplySide West, Heather Granato, vice president of content, spoke with Alex Zhavoronkov, Ph.D., CEO of Insilico Medicine (, about the evolution of AI, and how the technology is being specifically applied to investigate new ingredients that could beneficially impact the aging process, opening up new avenues for product development.

Key points of this podcast include:

• How AI is helping identify biomarkers of aging that can change the types of products companies develop.

• Understanding “geroprotectors”—particular compounds that impact lifespan and healthspan, and what formulators could do with these types of ingredients.

• The ways that AI is taking the current state of personalized nutrition into the future by expanding the options available to product developers.

Links and Resources:

• Alex Zhavoronkov, Ph.D., will be speaking on the SupplySide Central stage on Friday, Nov. 9, from 11:30 a.m. to noon. SupplySide Central is located in the expo hall, and the sessions are free to all participants. 

• Healthy aging is going beyond the older population, as consumers of all ages are looking for solutions to help them pursue healthy lives across the continuum. Learn more about ingredient solutions and marketing opportunities in the INSIDER Digital Magazine “Healthy Aging: Optimizing Life with Supplements and Nutrition.” 

About the Author(s)

Heather Granato

VP, Partnerships & Sustainability, Informa Markets, Food EMEA division

Heather Granato is a 30-year veteran of the natural products industry, currently serving as vice president, partnerships & sustainability, in the Food EMEA division of Informa Markets. She is based in London, and leads efforts related to industry partnerships and broader sustainability initiatives for the Vitafoods and Food ingredients brands. She has been a presenter at events including SupplySide, Vitafoods, Food ingredients, Natural Products Expo, the Natural Gourmet Show and the Folio: Show. Her publishing experience includes Natural Products Insider, Food Product Design, Vitafoods Insights, Country Living's Healthy Living, Natural Foods Merchandiser, Delicious Magazine and Granato serves as the founding president of Women In Nutraceuticals, a global non-profit founded in 2022 focused on empowering women in the nutraceutical industry; she is also on the board of directors for the Organic & Natural Health Association. From 2016 to 2022, she was a vice president on the national governing board of Kappa Alpha Theta women’s fraternity. Granato was named to the FOLIO: 100 list of top media professionals in 2018, and was selected as a 2015 Top Woman in Media by FOLIO:. She received the 2014 Visionary Award and the 2018 Journalistic Excellence Award from the American Herbal Products Association (AHPA); and was honored with the CEO Merit Award for Content from Virgo in 2014. Granato graduated magna cum laude from the University of Richmond, Virginia, in 1992 with a bachelor’s degree in journalism.

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