Solutions for natural immune support

Our solutions provide high-quality, bioactive proteins and prebiotics with scientifically validated benefits.

The new opportunity in immune health

Consumers continue to take a proactive approach to health improvement with immunity as a leading priority. The best medicine is preventative, and perhaps the prime example of this principle is our own amazing immune system.

Not surprisingly, consumer interest in immunity is at an all-time high, and as a result demand for supplements, ingredients and foods with immunity-supporting properties is accelerating1.

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    Prompted by consumer demand, the number of product launches featuring immune health claims has risen for several years in a row2. The market for supplements with immunity propositions has also grown significantly, with US sales increasing by 25% in 20203. These trends look set to accelerate in the wake of COVID-19.

    At the same time, consumers are becoming more educated and discerning in what they buy to support their immunity. They will actively seek out scientific substantiation – in fact, almost half say they regularly research ingredients to help decide on their best options4.

    This will lead to significant new opportunities for growth, as our increasing understanding of the human immune system leads to new solutions with scientifically validated benefits.

    • In 2019, 53% of consumers stated that they wanted to improve their immune health, but this rose to 70% in 2020.
    • 60% of surveyed consumers state they have become more conscious about their immune health as a result of COVID-195.
    • There has been an annual growth of +13% for new F&B products carrying an immunity claim between 2016 and 20206.
    • 40% stated they used more fortified drinks, whereas 16% stated that they used more supplements to improve their immune health5.
    • 27% of consumers think supplements are important to immune health. Peak interest is found among Millennials and younger Generation X 7.
    • There were far more launches of supplements with immune health claims compared to food and drinks in 20208.
    • 32% of global supplement launches tracked by Innova Market Insights in the 12 months to the end of March 2021 were launched with an immune health positioning, up from just under 26% over the previous 12 -month period6.

1Nutraingredients, May 2020; 2Mintel GNPD, April 2020; 3Nutrition Business Journal, April 2020; 4FMCG Gurus, 2020.
5FMCG Gurus, 2020; 6Innova Market Insights, 2021; 7Innova Trends Survey, 2020; 8New Hope Network, August 2020;

Introducing Biotis® Immune Health

Our immune health platform represents a whole new era of ingredient science.

We’re opening up new opportunities for our customers by tapping into our extensive experience in ingredients and innovative applications, as well as directing our focus towards exploring the beneficial impact of dairy on the immune system across the entire adult life span.

Numerous dairy-derived ingredients have already demonstrated their potential to form the basis of scientifically robust, immunity-supporting products. We look forward to co-creating with our customers to develop and bring these innovative products to market.

The human immune system

The human immune system is a breathtakingly sophisticated and complex triumph of evolution.

Our body seeks to maintain a state of physical and biochemical harmony and balance (called ‘homeostasis’), but this desirable state is constantly being threatened by invasion from disease-causing microbes such as bacteria and viruses.

These can enter our bodies through what we eat, through our skin (especially via wounds) and via the air that we breathe.

The immune system consists of dozens of different types of agents – specialist cells and biochemicals – whose sole job is to track down, identify and kill these pathogens.

At the same time these agents must ignore friendly bacteria and, of course, avoid over-reaction – attacking the body and its organs by mistake.

Dairy, health and immunity

For centuries, dairy, health and immunity have gone hand in hand. Dairy products provide protein that helps to build and maintain muscles, but are also packed full of vitamins and minerals that support the immune system.

Because the creation of immunity begins at birth, milk has a central role, and so it isn’t surprising to find that many of the ingredients within dairy can help maintain a healthy immune system1-3.

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    Dairy can both help our immune system to stay active, but also prevent it becoming hyperactive4. Both human5 and cow’s milk6 have been shown to contain antigens, immune modulators, prebiotics7 and antimicrobials.

    An important component of cow’s milk, whey protein is known to be a high-quality protein source for muscle protein synthesis, as it contains all nine essential amino acids, has a high leucine level and is easily digestible.

    In addition, many of the components in whey protein, including lactoferrin and immunoglobulins, have been shown to play an active role in supporting immunity8.

1Meyer et al., Ann Nutr Metab 2006;50(3):282-9; 2Olivares et al., J Dairy Res 2006;73(4):492-8; 3Ebringer et al., Folia Microbiol (Praha) 2008;53(5):378-94; 4Perdijk et al., Front Immunol 2018;9:143; 5Hosea Blewett et al., Advances in Food and Nutrition Research 2008; 54:45-80; 6van Neerven et al., J Allergy Clin Immunol 2012;130:853–8; 7ISAPP (International Scientific Association for Probiotics and Prebiotics); Gibson et al., 2017; Substrates that are selectively utilized by host microorganisms conferring a health benefit; 8Ng, Tzi Bun, et al., Applied microbiology and biotechnology 99.17 (2015): 6997-7008.

The promise of lactoferrin

Lactoferrin is a globular glycoprotein found in human and bovine milk, which has been shown to provide multiple beneficial effects for immune health.

At Biotis® Immune Health, we are researching and developing the potential consumer benefits of lactoferrin, as well as exploring other complementary dairy ingredients and solutions in this rapidly growing area.

Antiviral – Antibacterial – Iron absorption

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    Lactoferrin has strong antiviral activity against a broad spectrum of both naked and enveloped DNA and RNA viruses4.

    Lactoferrin has also been shown to protect against bacteriological infection, both by competing with siderophilic bacteria for ferric iron2, and by various other mechanisms independent of its iron-binding ability3.

    Iron regulation
    With its very specific iron-binding properties, lactoferrin is emerging as an important regulator of iron homeostasis, avoiding iron accumulation in tissues and secretions – which causes iron deficiency in blood1.

1Paesano et al., Pathogens and Global Health 2012; 106(4):200-216; 2Fransson and Lönnerdal., J Pediatr. 1980;96(3 Pt 1):380-4; 3Kell et al., Front Immunol 2020;11:1221; 4Chen et al., Int J Mol Sci. 2017;18(9):1957.

Lactoferrin – in demand globally

Lactoferrin is already widely known as a bioactive ingredient in many parts of the world.

Of those who are aware of the health benefits of lactoferrin, between 60 and 88 percent of consumers in the US, China, Japan, Korea, Australia and Indonesia regularly seek out products that contain it.

These consumers believe that lactoferrin reduces vulnerability to diseases and improves overall health and recovery. They tend to buy products containing lactoferrin as part of their daily health routine, or when they feel that they may be getting a cold.

Lactoferrin is gaining popularity in Europe as various research groups have independently published expectations that lactoferrin might be effective against COVID-191-4.

Recent clinical findings in Italy1 show that lactoferrin supplementation supports fast removal of the virus from the body. More controlled trials are ongoing to confirm efficacy.

1Campione et al., BioRxiv 2020:1–33; 2Serrano et al., Int J of Research in Health Sciences 8(1):8-15; 3Lang et al., PLoS One. 2011;6(8):e23710; 4Mirabelli et al., BioRriv 2020 bioRxiv. 2020 Jun preprint.

Biotis® Lactoferrin

Thanks to FrieslandCampina Ingredients’ expertise in lactoferrin production and our cutting-edge separation technique, Biotis® Lactoferrin features the highest and most consistent quality level on the global market.

We control the entire supply chain for Biotis® Lactoferrin, using our own raw milk for production, as well as gentle heat treatments to preserve nativity and immune bioactivity.

We work directly with our customers to help them deliver exciting new products and innovations to market, advising all the way from concept to prototype and eventually full product launch. For example, we are exploring prototype consumer products that can supply immunity-supporting nutrients in the most natural and convenient way possible.

Join us as we explore the possibilities for better immune health, globally.

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