Japan focus: The 10 most-read stories on Japan’s nutrition sector in 2022

By Tingmin Koe

- Last updated on GMT

The 10 most-read stories on Japan’s nutrition sector in 2022

Related tags top stories shinya koso BRAND's Suntory Mitsubishi Corporation Kirin Morinaga Meiji

See our 10 most-read stories related to Japan’s nutrition industry this year, including Shinya Koso’s insights on the enzyme supplement market, Brand’s Suntory D2C new product launches, Mitsubishi’s nicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN) clinical trial and more.
‘The market for active enzymes is immeasurable’: Japan’s Shinya Koso on digestive health, weight management trends

Supplement brand Shinya Koso believes that the market for active enzymes products is immeasurable, driven by consumers’ concern with digestive health and weight management.

Currently, the brand’s existing consumers can be broadly categorised into two groups.The first group is mainly individuals over 40 years old and are consuming the product to maintain their intestinal health.

The other key consumers of Shinya Koso are women in their early 20s to 40s and are concerned with weight management. 

Sesame goodness: Brand’s Suntory launches new products for brain, heart health in D2C channel

Brand’s Suntory is expanding its portfolio​ for brain and heart health with new products launched via the direct-to-consumer (D2C) channel in Singapore.

The company introduced two products from its parent company Suntory into Singapore in December and August last year, namely 1) DHA & EPA + Sesamin EX and 2) Sesamin EX.

The two products, which have been sold in Japan for several years, were introduced to the Singapore market via the D2C channel

Nutra trends 2022: Nestle, Morinaga, Shiseido, Max Biocare weigh in on what’s ahead for the industry

Nestle, Morinaga, Max Biocare and Shiseido revealed their predictions for this year’s health and nutrition trends, spanning insights across healthy ageing, infant nutrition, kids’, women’s, and men’s health.

For example, Nestle China said that immunity and comprehensive nutrition would take centre stage in the healthy ageing sector this year.

Some of the products that it has been working on included milk powder for seniors.

Potential for sarcopenia? Mitsubishi-funded trial shows NMN intake improves motor function in older men

A 12-week RCT funded by Mitsubishi Corporation Life Sciences has shown that nicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN) intake has significantly improved certain aspects of muscle mobility, especially gait speed and left grip strength – which the company says presents a “potential therapeutic strategy for sarcopenia”.

This is the third human clinical trial finding that the Japanese company has published in this year.

The latest findings were published in the scientific journal Aging, ​with the trial conducted by researchers from The University of Tokyo, The University of Tokyo Hospital, University of Toyama, Toranomon Hospital, and Mitsubishi Corporation Life Sciences.

Sleep and skin: Kao launching first supplement product under skincare, cosmetic brand est

Kao will introduce its first Food with Function Claims (FFC) product in Japan for its skincare and cosmetic brand est on October 7.

Known as ‘est Liquid Supplement +’, the product contains GABA and coffee-bean derived chlorogenic acids – an ingredient which the firm has been studying extensively.

The pomegranate flavoured product claims to improve sleep quality, skin elasticity, and maintain peripheral body temperature and is recommended to be taken before sleep.

Bouncing back: Meiji re-enters Thailand’s toddler formula market after 17 years with powder cubes

Meiji is re-entering Thailand’s infant formula market with a powder cube product, 17 years after it wound up its business in the country due to an international currency crisis.

The product, known as Meiji GU Formula Gold EZcube, is for toddlers age one to three and is currently sold in Thailand via e-commerce.

The technology for making the cubes – which is Meiji’s proprietary technology – is in fact the same as the one used for manufacturing Danone’s Aptamil pre-measured tabs​ launched in the UK a year ago.  

Heat-killed L. plantarum for belly fat: Meiji launching two new FFCs containing novel strain

Meiji will launch two new Foods with Function Claims (FFC) designed for reducing belly fat in Japan from October 11.

The two products – a yogurt and a yogurt drink, contain heat-killed Lactobacillus plantarum ​OLL2712, also known as MI-2 lactic acid bacteria. 

They claim to reduce belly fat in obese people by suppressing the accumulation of body fat.

Meiji’s market insights: Functional yogurt sales continue to slide, but sports nutrition on a surge

Meiji’s sales of functional yogurt in Japan have been declining due to the levelling of demand and an intensifying market competition, but sports nutrition is on the up, the firm has revealed.

Net sales of functional yogurt dropped 12 per cent to JPY$24.2bn (US$209m) as compared to Q3 FY2020.

The reduction in functional yogurt sales has also dragged down the company’s overall sales and operating profit of its yogurt and cheese business by 7.9 per cent and 26.7 per cent in Q1-Q3 FY2021 as compared to the same period in FY2020.

US formula shortage: Danone NZ, Bellamy’s Organic latest to receive US FDA approval, Meiji makes application

Danone New Zealand and Australia-based Bellamy’s Organic are the latest to receive the US FDA’s approval to supply infant formula to the country amid its shortage crisis.

Meiji, on the other hand, has applied to the US FDA for the export of two infant formula. 

One of it is a powdered milk for babies allergic to lactose manufactured in its Saitama factory in Japan, while the other one is a cube-shaped powdered milk. 

Immunity partnerships: Kirin targets SEA dairy, functional drinks collaboration with award-winning ingredient

Kirin is expanding its presence in South East Asia (SEA) with its flagship postbiotic ingredient trademarked IMMUSE, and collaborations with major dairy companies are underway.

In addition, the firm is applying for halal certification to market the ingredient in Indonesia and Malaysia.

In fact, the firm has been actively seeking brand collaborations within and outside of Japan. Coca-Cola Japan is another example that it is working with to formulate IMMUSE into functional beverages.

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