Gumming for the krill: NutraCeutical Ingredients forays into kids supplements with brain health product
Marketed as BrainFit, the supplement is a sugar-free gummy said to support memory and concentration.
This is NCI’s first foray into children supplements, with most of its products targeted at seniors to help improve mobility, or those suffering from bone and joint problems.
According to Chris Lim, director at NCI, the firm wanted to develop supplements for children after seeing market growth.
In a DSM study conducted in 2018 surveying more than 7,000 mothers of children across the world, there was a greater focus on cognitive development in Asia compared to Western markets where teeth and bones were ranked higher.
In addition, the study revealed that supplementation is more prevalent amongst Asian mothers, whereas many in the West cite a healthy diet as being sufficient.
What’s in it
Most of the children supplement sales in Singapore tend to be gummies, citing easy consumption, according to Lim.
NCI develops its own formulas in-house, before sending it for production in Malaysia.
“This makes our formula unique, and we can ensure the dosage is meaningful based on available scientific data,” Lim said.
“For instance, based on landmark studies on phosphatidyl serine, a 100mg to 200mg dose is shown to boost mental sharpness and improve cognitive function in children. So, we made sure every serving of BrainFit contains 100mg of phosphatidyl serine.”
Phosphatidyl serine is naturally found in breast milk, and is an essential brain-building block proven to support cognitive skills and enhance concentration and learning.
Other ingredients in BrainFit include krill oil which contributes to EPA and DHA levels. EPA and DHA helps in cognitive functions, and a study has reported krill oil consumption can increase EPA levels in blood lipid more than fish oil.
Lim pointed out that BrainFit is currently the only sugar-free gummy formula using phosphatidyl serine and krill oil.
“We use krill oil and not fish oil like most other brands because krill lives in the untouched waters of the Antarctic Ocean, the cleanest waters on earth. This means they have naturally low levels of environmental contaminants, resulting in a pure and natural product.”
Each serving of BrainFit (2 gummies) contains 110mg of krill oil.
“In addition, most kids’ gummy supplements have a high sugar content. We use maltitol, a sugar alcohol found naturally in some fruits and vegetables in our formulation so that the gummies remain tasty yet healthy.”
NCI sources its ingredients from Western Europe.
According to Lim, development of BrainFit took about four years, citing challenges in finding suitable ingredients with proven effects, and masking the seafood taste of krill oil by using a citrus base.
BrainFit is suitable for children 2 years and older.
The supplement is sold on NCI’s online stores, pharmacies, and several online platforms in Singapore.
NCI currently exports its bone and joint supplements to Malaysia, the Philippines, and Brunei, and hopes to do so for BrainFit in the future.
For now, it is working on building brand awareness mainly through TV and digital marketing and some influencer marketing.