CHINA – The demand for infant formula containing SN-2 palmitate – an ingredient that mimics the fatty acid profile in human milk – has soared over the past decade and will continue to grow, according to Advanced Lipids.

Advanced Lipids is a joint venture established by Enzymotec, a leading biotech company specializing in lipid-based bio-functional ingredients, and AAK, a global producer and supplier of speciality vegetable fats and oils for the infant formula industry.

Advanced Lipids markets and sells INFAT, a SN-2 palmitate fat ingredient that allows formula manufacturers to offer many benefits that are closer to mother’s milk.

The company is celebrating its tenth anniversary this year, since it began in 2007, when Advanced Lipids was founded, incorporating five infant formula brands INFAT.

INFAT was clinically proven in several studies done both in Israel and China to increase fat and calcium absorption, improve bone matrix quality, improve stool consistency, and have a positive effect on the development of the intestinal microbiome.

Recently, it was also shown to improve baby’s well-being and the quality of life of their parents by reducing crying time and increasing sleep duration.

“As a company that is looking into improving infant nutrition, we saw a great opportunity in this game-changing ingredient that supports formula manufacturers to replicate the benefits of mother’s milk as closely as possible.

Over the past decade we’ve been part of huge growth in the infant formula market and witnessed soaring demand for high-end products containing SN-2 palmitate,” said Ronald van der Knaap, CEO of Advanced Lipids.

The global market for infant formula, according to Euromonitor international, has almost tripled since 2006 and currently has a retail value of over US$40 billion, with China accounting for 45% retail value.

Consumers in China place a premium on quality and have high awareness of the benefits of SN-2 palmitate.

Advanced Lipids believes regulatory and demographic changes in China will lead to further growth for the formula market, particularly for premium products containing SN-2 palmitate.

“Demand for infant formula in China has soared, and the signs we get from the market indicate that growth will continue.

However, companies are now facing a tougher market where consumers and authorities both demand high standards.

Over the next ten years, the focus will be on high-quality formula which contains ingredients such as INFAT.

Advanced Lipids will also put a strong focus on developing innovative INFAT solutions in the coming years,” said Dr. Marcus Gliwitzki, Chairman of Advanced Lipids.