Posted on: July 4th, 2023

The probiotics market has experienced significant growth globally, particularly in the form of supplements. In 2021, the industry reached a value of over $48 billion, with a 22% increase in probiotic supplements from 2019 to 2021. This growth can be attributed to the growing evidence that probiotics promote gastrointestinal (GI) health. 

Clinical research has demonstrated the effectiveness of probiotics in treating various conditions, including antibiotic-associated diarrhea, upper respiratory tract infections, abdominal pain in children, and infant colic.

Probiotic Strains

Responding to the rising consumer demand and industry expansion, researchers are actively developing new and innovative probiotic strains. They consider factors such as processing, storage, gastrointestinal survivability, and cell functionality. Compatibility with other ingredients is a crucial consideration during formulation. 

Encapsulation of probiotic strains may be employed to enhance survivability in the GI tract, during processing, and when added to different food products such as powders, bars, gummies, infant formula, and pet food.

The most commonly used probiotic strains belong to the Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium genera, owing to their abundance in the human gut and Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) status. Strains from other genera like Bacillus, Saccharomyces, and Streptococcus are also used as probiotic supplements.

Probiotic Level Verification

Regardless of whether probiotics contain multiple strains or single strains, and whether they are in capsule form, powder form, or added to food products, the claimed levels on labels need to be verified. Mérieux NutriSciences provides verification of probiotic levels in Colony-Forming Units (CFUs) or Active Forming Units (AFUs). They have expertise in testing various probiotic strains and ensuring their safety for human consumption by testing for contaminants.

For strains to qualify as probiotics, they must be viable and offer health benefits when consumed. Clinical studies help determine the minimal and optimal doses required for probiotics to have a positive impact on health outcomes. Biofortis, a sister company of Mérieux NutriSciences, specializes in clinical research testing to assess GI survivability and conduct health benefit claim studies.

Mérieux NutriSciences’ laboratory services and Biofortis Research’s clinical trial services support the entire lifecycle of probiotic products, ensuring high-quality formulations backed by data.

Research at Biofortis

Biofortis is dedicated to protecting consumer health throughout the world by delivering a wide range of testing and consultancy services to the food, supplement, and nutrition industries. Biofortis supports this mission in two ways—through clinical trials and sensory and consumer insights testing. We specialize in clinical research targeting foods, ingredients, and dietary supplements that affect body structures, function, and overall health. Contact us with any clinical trial or scientific consulting needs.


Original article posted by Mérieux NutriSciences.

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