BASF Newtrition® Omega-3 has announced the global launch of Accelon™, a breakthrough Omega-3 absorption accelerating technology, with potential to be the biggest category innovation since the introduction of high concentrate Omega-3s in the late 1980s.
The Consumer Challenge with Omega-3s
The global Dietary Supplement Omega-3 category has evolved significantly in recent years, with EPA/DHA Omega-3 ingredients alone worth USD 4 billion1. However, Omega3 deficiency remains a major health issue worldwide. In the USA approximately 60% of consumers are aware of the benefits of including Omega-3 supplements in their diets, yet usage is estimated at only 20%2.
Newtrition® Omega-3 consumer research3 shows that the majority of people are confused about how and why Omega-3 supplementation can benefit their long term health and wellbeing. It highlighted a lack of consumer clarity around Omega-3 supplement strength and potency messages, plus practical issues such as when to take Omega-3 and if it
should be taken with a meal. Consumers agree that other VMS platforms such as Vitamin D or Probiotics communicate simpler benefits and/or clearer efficacy indicators.
Providing stronger reasons to believe in the benefits and efficacy of Omega-3 supplementation was therefore identified as a top priority for influencing consumer category penetration.
The Biological Challenge with Omega-3s
On top of opportunities uncovered by consumer research, Newtrition® Omega-3’s extensive pharmaceutical knowledge and clinical research helped expose a number of key biological challenges. These are likely unknown to consumers, yet with high potential to form the basis of a strong, credible marketing narrative to influence future consumption.
The majority of consumers take Omega-3 supplements during their morning routine; however, many people regularly skip or delay breakfast4, or don’t consume breakfast foods ideal for optimal absorption of Omega-3 into the body. This means existing Omega-3 supplements, no matter how strong or potent, tend to absorb less efficiently and therefore provide fewer benefits when consumed.
It was at this intersection of consumer and scientific research where the idea was born for a new technology which could solve these significant challenges and deliver new category benefits.
Accelon™ Delivers a Minimum 4X Omega-3 Absorption
Accelon™ absorption accelerating technology is designed to enable more Omega-3 to get to where it’s needed in the body. On entering the stomach, Accelon™ uniquely causes Omega-3 to disperse rapidly in a micro-emulsion that passes into the intestine. Inside the intestinal lumen, the micro-droplets’ more accessible surface allows highly effective digestion and releases high amounts of EPA and DHA in free fatty acid form. Significantly more EPA and DHA can now diffuse and be absorbed through the mucosal cells layer and subsequently released into the body’s circulation.
Studies have shown that Accelon™delivers a minimum of 4X better absorption of Omega3 on an empty stomach in comparison to other market-leading high concentrate Omega-3 products, which results in a higher delivery of EPA and DHA to cells throughout the body. Typically, people are advised to take Omega-3 supplements with food, so this requirement is no longer needed, making compliance easy and convenient. Even if taken with food, Accelon™
absorption is still more than 30% greater than with other Omega-3s. The study results mean that Omega-3 uptake with Accelon™ absorption accelerating technology represents a significant, distinct and relevant breakthrough for the Omega-3 supplements category.
Accelon™ Benefits Validated by Consumer Research
Øyvind Ihle, Team Leader at Newtrition® Omega-3 explains why differentiation is crucial for consumer behaviour change: “Omega-3 efficacy is supported by more scientific research than any other VMS nutrient and yet there remains a global deficiency. We believe it is our responsibility to introduce consumers to Omega-3 in a way that genuinely works, leveraging the Accelon™ technology to help redefine the role and importance of Omega-3 in consumers’ lives.
“In research, consumers liked the idea of a turbo-charged, effectively absorbed ‘intelligent’ Omega-3 which reaches the body’s cells where it’s needed, without having to take it with food or at a specific time of day. In fact, new product concepts featuring the Accelon™ logo on pack clearly resonated with consumers as they scored 30% higher on purchase intent than those without.
“Accelon™ offers ambitious, forward-thinking brand owners a unique competitive edge with new and superior, consumer-ready technology. Our test results show that consumers really understand the task Accelon™ has been designed for and looking forward, how a new generation of Accelon™-enabled Omega-3 products could support their biggest health challenges. People need simple and credible reasons to believe that it’s worthwhile taking Omega-3 supplements regularly. This is what’s going to help brand owners build the category and we look forward to meeting them to discuss together how we can support their growth ambitions”, concludes Øyvind Ihle.
1. Global Market Insights, Inc. June 14 2017
2. Nielsen BASES USA, Feb 2014
3. Concept Research Report June 2016. Ink Research, London UK
4. https://platform.surveysampling.com/surveybuilder/report/55675611e4b02dd534ce287e 53% Americans skip breakfast once/week, 12% always skip breakfast
About BASF Omega-3 Verbund
BASF Omega-3 Verbund was created following the BASF acquisition of Norwegian company ProNova BioPharma® in 2013. The Oslo-based global leader in pharmaceutical Omega-3 with the Omacor® and Lovaza brands has been pioneering Omega-3 technology in Norway since 1838. The Verbund-wide mission is to enable people to live stronger for longer by exclusive dedication to developing the world's most effective and proven Omega-3 solutions. In the last five years, BASF Omega-3 Verbund has established a dedicated team and set of capabilities with the objective of combining leading science and consumer insight to commercialize breakthrough Omega-3 technology for consumer categories.
About the BASF Nutrition & Health division
BASF Nutrition & Health provides a comprehensive product and service portfolio for the human and animal nutrition, pharmaceutical and flavor & fragrance industries. With innovative solutions and modern technologies we help our customers improve their business efficiency and the sustainability of their products. Our human nutrition solutions include vitamins and carotenoids, plant sterols, emulsifiers and omega-3 fatty acids. Vitamins and carotenoids also form an important part of our animal nutrition portfolio, as do other feed additives such as trace elements, enzymes and organic acids. We provide the pharmaceutical industry with a broad range of excipients and selected large-volume active pharmaceutical ingredients such as ibuprofen and omega-3 fatty acids. Furthermore, we offer aroma ingredients such as citral, geraniol and L-menthol. BASF Nutrition & Health operates sites in Europe, North America, South America and in Asia- Pacific. For more information, go to www.basf.com.
At BASF, we create chemistry for a sustainable future. We combine economic success with environmental protection and social responsibility. The approximately 114,000 employees in the BASF Group work on contributing to the success of our customers in nearly all sectors and almost every country in the world. Our portfolio is organized into five segments: Chemicals, Performance Products, Functional Materials & Solutions, Agricultural Solutions and Oil & Gas. BASF generated sales of about €58 billion in 2016. BASF shares are traded on the stock exchanges in Frankfurt (BAS), London (BFA) and Zurich (BAS). Further information at www.basf.com.