NutriLeads, DSM-Firmenich partner on precision prebiotic for pets

Pending results from ongoing microbiome studies in dogs and cats, the companies plan to introduce the Benicaros prebiotic to the pet food market.

2 Lisa Selfie December 2020 Headshot
Benicaros is a 100% natural prebiotic fiber from upcycled carrot pomace, a byproduct of carrot juicing.
Benicaros is a 100% natural prebiotic fiber from upcycled carrot pomace, a byproduct of carrot juicing.
HalfPoint | bigstockphoto.com

NutriLeads has announced a strategic collaboration with DSM-Firmenich to evaluate potential applications of its precision prebiotic, Benicaros, to enhance the gut and immune health of pets. Pending results from ongoing microbiome studies in dogs and cats, the companies plan to enter into an exclusive global partnership to develop and market products containing a pet food version of Benicaros.

Benicaros is a 100% natural prebiotic fiber from upcycled carrot pomace, a byproduct of carrot juicing. Multiple human studies demonstrate that Benicaros consistently increases beneficial gut bacteria, including Bifidobacterium species (mainly B. adolescentis and B. longum), which are also common in the gut microbiome of dogs and cats. Benicaros is designed to significantly increase production of short chain fatty acids (acetate, propionate and butyrate) that support gut barrier function, immune health and energy metabolism. Benicaros also enhances the responses of innate immune cells when presented with a challenge, said the company.

NutriLeads noted it has published multiple peer-reviewed studies demonstrating that Benicaros trains the human immune system to respond faster, smarter and stronger while selectively increasing beneficial gut microorganisms that are crucial to resilient gut and overall health. The companies said they believe Benicaros also has strong potential to benefit the health and vitality of pets. 

“We see tremendous potential for Benicaros to optimize pet health and longevity by enhancing digestive and immune health,” said Joana Carneiro-Wakefield, Ph.D., NutriLeads CEO. “Based on our previous research, we believe that Benicaros can be a ‘game-changing’ ingredient for pet parents as well as pet food and nutrition manufacturers.”

Pierre-Alain Ceralli, senior vice president Petfood Business with DSM-Firmenich, noted the global pet food market is expected to reach $175 billion in annual sales by 2027. “A key growth driver is an increased demand for healthier ingredients that are science-based, human-grade, vegetarian and sustainable," said Ceralli. "Benicaros aligns perfectly with this industry trend and complements perfectly DSM-Firmenich’s science-based and consumer-focused microbiome offering for the petfood industry.”

The animal studies with Benicaros that NutriLeads and DSM-Firmenich are conducting are expected to be completed later this year. The results, they said, will guide the companies’ next steps.

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