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From Lab to Plate: How Are Probiotics Added to Food?

From Lab to Plate: How Are Probiotics Added to Food?

Consumers recognize that maintaining a healthy digestive system significantly contributes to their overall well-being. Probiotics, often called “good bacteria,” play a crucial role in supporting a balanced gut microflora. As a result, we’re witnessing a growing trend in functional foods and beverages that contain specific probiotics, offering various health benefits.

The Rise of Functional Foods and Beverages

Functional foods and beverages are those that provide health benefits beyond basic nutrition. In addition to nutrient-rich ingredients like fruits and vegetables, the category includes foods fortified with vitamins, minerals, fiber, and probiotics. FMCG GURUS affirms, in their 2022 non-alcoholic beverages global report, that consumers are nowadays most likely to choose “better-for-you” beverages that are winning over sugary juices and colas, and 40% of global consumers state they are willing to pay up to 10% more for foods that provide functional benefits.[1]

The Challenges of Formulating with Probiotics

Probiotics are defined as “live microorganisms that, when administered in adequate amounts, confer a health benefit on the host.” This definition underscores two essential aspects: probiotic bacteria must be alive when consumed, and they must survive until they reach the intestinal tract, where they exert their health benefits.

 It takes a specific know-how to incorporate probiotics in food matrices, as formulating probiotics comes with challenges. The efficacy of probiotics is contingent to their capacity to survive the many stressors from the manufacturer’s plant to the consumer’s plate. Lallemand Health Solutions has developed a range of protective technologies to ensure optimal probiotic survival in food matrices, and efficacy at their site of action. Probiocap® technology is Lallemand’s proprietary microencapsulation technology that protects probiotic strains from physical stress such as compression, thermal shock, and high acidity, offering great opportunities for food applications.

Moreover, Lallemand Health Solutions proposes two Bacillus probiotic strains. When faced with harsh conditions, Bacillus strains undergo sporulation, forming protective endospores. When conditions become more favorable, these endospores can reactivate into active cells. This natural resilience allows spore-forming probiotics to endure challenges such as thermal processing, pH variations, gastric acidity, and long-term storage. Lallemand Health Solutions’ Bacillus probiotics have undergone rigorous testing in extreme conditions, including high-pressure processing, pasteurization and extrusion.

Probiotics for a Healthier Future

Leveraging 90 years of scientific and production know-how Lallemand Heath Solutions is committed to enhancing gut microbiome functionality and addressing various health needs. Our range of probiotic solutions spans microencapsulated Lactobacilli and Bifidobacterium strains, as well as spore-forming Bacillus bacteria. These offerings contribute to the global food and beverage market, promoting well-being in areas such as gut health, immune support, mental wellness, women’s health, metabolic balance, skin care, oral health, and even sports nutrition.

Looking to incorporate probiotics into your food and or beverage product? Reach out to us !

[1] FMCG Gurus, 2022

Published Nov 26, 2023 | Updated Mar 5, 2024

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