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Biosearch Life probiotic approved in China for infant formula use

By RJ Whitehead

- Last updated on GMT

Photo: iStock
Photo: iStock

Related tags Milk

Spanish probiotics, omega-3 and extracts supplier Biosearch Life has been given approval for the sale of its Lactobacillus fermentum CECT5716 LC40 probiotic strain by China’s Family Planning and National Health Commission for use in infant formula manufactured in China. 

The registration was granted after a long and arduous process, the company said, beginning after Lactobacillus fermentum​ was first included in China’s list of authorised probiotics for food and food supplements.

The LC40 strain is part of its range of patented Hereditum probiotics, which Biosearch Life isolated from breast milk, and has been shown to significantly reduce digestive and respiratory infections in children. 

Its safety is guaranteed by the QPS and GRAS classifications granted by Efsa and the FDA, and by the results of a long-term, three-year clinical trial for safety in children, Biosearch Life said. The strain has been use over several years in European children’s nutrition products.

With only eight strains authorised for comparable use in China, the company sees its own registration as a great opportunity in a market that has substantial demand for overseas-developed nutrition ingredients.

At the same time as the registration of Lactobacillus fermentum​ CECT5716 LC40, Chinese authorities announced a change in the rules governing infant formula, which will involve a restructure of the world’s biggest market. 

Last month, the China Food and Drug Administration published Administrative Measures on Product Formula Registration of Infant Formula Milk Powder ​in a bid to enhance its supervision of formulation and boost R&D, production and testing capacity. The measures will take into force on 1 October 2016. 

Omega Health takes Australian-sourced omega-3s to China

A specialist Australian algae and fish oil supplier will tackle China’s high-end dietary supplements market by exporting home-sourced omega-3 products.


Omega Health’s chief executive, Roger Stroud, said its chlorella algae products and pink salmon oil will fly the Australian flag in a bid to reassure Chinese customers over quality and safety.

"The very fact that they are single-sourced in Australia rather than from around the world from unknown sources, speaks to the purity and health benefits they can deliver​,” he said.

Founded in 2010, Omega’s algae processing facility in the far north of Queensland boasts a pristine freshwater environment, he added.

The microalgae, meanwhile, is sourced from Csiro, the government’s commercial research facility from its algae bank in Tasmania, and is fully certified.

Omega’s pink salmon oil is sourced from the Southern Ocean off Tasmania and is “unlike any other high-grade fish oil available in Australia​,” Stroud said.

It is high in pure omegas 3 & 6 & 9, while Tasmanian salmon oil has no polluting issues, especially in relation to heavy metals​.

"All the appropriate microbiological protocols are in place, including transport and bottling of the ​products,” Stroud added.

Academics announce Sino-British probiotics research centre

Chinese academics have collaborated with British counterparts to launch a UK-China Joint-Centre for Probiotic Research.


The Institute of Food Research, one of eight British institutes that receive strategic state funding, will formally collaborate with researchers at Jiangnan University after several years of reciprocal visits to exchange knowledge, training and expertise in probiotics.

Led by Arjan Narbad and Chen Wei, the centre benefits from grants from British-based international research incubator the Newton Fund to the tune of £250,000, with equivalent funding by Jiangnan University. 

It will allow us to strengthen ongoing collaboration and advance our interest in both fundamental and applied research focusing on gut bacteria​,” said Prof. Narbad. 

Prof. Wei added that the centre, which will be based at both the IFR and the planned National Engineering Research Centre for functional foods in Jiangan, will accelerate multidisciplinary efforts on probiotics, and also allow the development of further collaborations in food research.

Researchers at the facility will work together to tackle challenges in probiotics facing both China and Britain, as well as collaborating on research projects with funding from sources in the two countries. 

Already, the partnership has published several joint-papers, with the latest appearing in the journal Applied Microbiology and biotechnology​, which describes the development of a probiotic to alleviate the symptoms of metal toxicity, specifically aluminium. 

Other projects will look at the development of probiotics to help counter antimicrobial resistance, a serious issue in China and the rest of the world.

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