Editor's Spotlight

Japan Focus: Food with Function Claims, functional innovations in probiotics and protein, and formula for emergencies

By Cheryl Tay contact

- Last updated on GMT

Japan Focus: Food with Function Claims, functional innovations in probiotics and protein, and formula for emergencies

Related tags: Japan, Probiotics, Protein, Healthy ageing

Find out which Japanese firms will feature at this year's Healthy Ageing APAC Summit, which brands have benefited the most from the FFC system, and what new innovations have sprung up in Japan.

Foods with Function Claims in Japan: Four years on, which firms have benefited most from the regulations?

FANCL, Nippon Suisan, and Ezaki Glico are three of the biggest beneficiaries of Japan's Food with Function Claims​ (FFC), which was introduced four years ago and gave firms more opportunities to make health claims without going through the more stringent FOSHU process.

FANCL's revenue climbed from ¥800m (US$7.2m) to ¥5bn (US$45.5m) in the period since the FFC system was introduced.

The information was revealed by FANCL's executive VP and director, Kazumi Miyajima, when he was speaking a panel discussion at an event organised by Japan Direct Marketing Association (JADMA) recently. The theme of the event was to commemorate the FFC system's fourth 'anniversary'.

Meiji upgrades Lactobacillus​ yoghurt and beverage to claim uric acid-suppressing ability

Meiji is relaunching two products​, a yogurt and a beverage drink containing Lactobacillus​, as Foods with Function Claims (FFC) in Japan.

The two products, Meiji Probio Yogurt PA-3 and Meiji Probio Yogurt PA-3 Drink, claim to suppress rising uric acid levels, with 5.6 billion units of Lactobacillus gasseri​ PA-3 as their active ingredient.

PA-3 reduces uric acid levels by metabolising purine, a precursor to uric acid.

Vending machine infant formula: Japan's Ezaki Glico ramps up solutions for emergency and convenience

Japan's Ezaki Glico is breaking the norm​ of selling infant formula at supermarkets and mum-and-baby stores, and will now sell its liquid infant formula under the label Icreo Baby Milk through a vending machine in Hokkaido.

The decision to do so was made largely to meet consumers' needs during emergency events, such as natural disasters, and also to provide greater ease of convenience.

The vending machine is located at a newly opened roadside station in Hamatonbetsu, a town in Hokkaido. There are currently 1,154 registered roadside stations in Japan, which consist of parking lots, restrooms, and community facilities.

Healthy Ageing APAC Summit: Will you be joining Nestlé, PepsiCo, Kirin, BioCeuticals and FANCL?

There are just two months to go until the second Healthy Ageing APAC Summit​ in Singapore, organised by FoodNavigator-Asia and NutraIngredients-Asia and featuring a stellar line-up of major brands and leading academics.

With the number of over-60s in Asia set to double to 1.3 billion by 2050, the event will look at how the nutrition and food industry can meet the needs of the rapidly ageing populations of today, and more crucially, tomorrow.

This means we'll be shining the spotlight on the latest product innovations, ingredient discoveries, and research targeted at older consumers, while also assessing what industry is doing to improve the health of younger consumers, so they can ultimately lead a more active and healthy life, and enjoy their golden years for longer in the future.

Gaining popularity: Japan start-up launches cricket bars as an alternative protein source

Japan start up Bugmo is offering an alternative protein source​ — in the form of cricket protein bars to boost general wellness and confer muscle benefits.

The company started to sell cricket protein bars via e-commerce and in about 10 gyms in the Osaka and Kyoto area since November last year, and has since sold about 5,000 bars. 

In an interview with NutraIngredients-Asia​, CEO Yusuke Matsui and co-founder Fu Nishimoto said that the products were finding popularity amongst gym-goers and office ladies.

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