Ocean Nutrition Canada Limited (ONC), supplier of MEG-3® brand Omega-3® EPA/DHA food and dietary supplement ingredients, is pleased to announce a significant Canadian regulatory approval enabling food manufacturers to include MEG-3® brand Omega-3® (EPA and DHA) ingredients in a broad range of foods. Canadian consumers can now benefit from EPA and DHA as value added nutrition in most food products, helping consumers with improved nutrition.
EPA (Eicosapentaenoic Acid) and DHA (Docosahexaenoic Acid) are the physiologically essential fatty acids important for good health and normal growth and development. Many studies have shown that DHA plays an essential role in the normal development of the brain, eyes and nerves, while EPA provides an anti-flammatory benefit. Together, EPA and DHA aid in the maintenance of cardiovascular function.
Health Canada expanded the scope of their Novel Food Notification to include EPA and DHA exclusively from the MEG-3® brand food ingredient for most food products. The approval also increased the amount of EPA and DHA from 50mg to 100mg per food serving. Additionally, the MEG-3® brand DHA food ingredient was approved for virtually all Canadian food products.
In 2003, when Ocean Nutrition Canada submitted its original application, Health Canada approved only 50mg of EPA/DHA per serving and eight types of foods for inclusion of the MEG-3® brand food ingredient. Health Canada has completed a further safety assessment and revised their original decision to dramatically expand the use of the MEG-3® brand EPA and DHA food ingredients to virtually all food types.
The Canadian food market has been limited in use with the EPA and DHA forms of Omega-3. Until now, companies have needed to use the precursor source of Omega-3, Alpha-Linolenic Acid, ALA, found in plant sources like flax. This issue has been a source of confusion to consumers because the conversion of ALA to the active forms of Omega-3, EPA and DHA, is only about 5%, so the health value of adding Omega-3 to foods has been very limited.
Ian Lucas, executive vice president of global marketing with ONC, said, “The exclusive approval of MEG-3® brand EPA and DHA ingredient for a broad range of foods in Canada is important because these nutrients are the active forms of Omega-3 and offer true health benefits for Canadian consumers.”
Lucas also noted, “Food companies can now put the most trusted source of Omega-3 in their products, which will offer their consumers more value and product appeal, through differentiation. Consumers will now be able to trust their favorite brands for delivering the best source of Omega-3.”
For more information, please contact:
Marketing Communications Manager
Ocean Nutrition Canada Limited
Ocean Nutrition Canada is a graduate of INNOVACORP's High Performance Incubation (HPi) program.
Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, June 5, 2006