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‘Galacto-oligosaccharides – a strategic review of opportunities and applications’ (September 2008)

Report # 7 in’s ‘Target business opportunities’ series of publications

This report is predicated by the fact that the oligosaccharide industry is a burgeoning global business with GOS an integral part based on:

  • A large number of new entrants in processing and end-use application terms
  • The widening of the product offerings due to greater breadth of raw materials and conversion technology
  • New & emerging applications based on bioactive and physico-chemical properties
  • The continued intervention of science & technology in new fields of application, new extractive methods & procedures for improving yields with lower cost impost
  • Regulatory changes in favour of use

The oligosaccharide market emerged in Japan during the 1970s and widened to Greater Asia & Europe. As with oligosaccharides, GOS demand is driven by consumer health awareness, & new demand is expected in US, Australia & NZ as a result of recent regulatory changes (eg in 2008 US FDA recognized Friesland Foods Domo Vivinal GOS as GRAS status used in infant formula & other foods). Global oligosaccharide production is shown by the following graph, with GOS a growing share.

Figure : Annual trends in global oligosaccharide production (estimates ‘000 mt, 1990-2018)

As further background, this report has been produced because of interest in the dairy and user industries in GOS arising from a range of factors such as:

  • The tremendous interest in galacto-oligosaccharides in Europe and Asia – notably in infant formula, follow-on formula and growing-up milk, but certainly expanding into a wider field of applications as knowledge on use and benefits expands, and market demand grows
  • The recent change in regulations in both the United States (where Friesland’s Vivinal GOS has received GRAS status for application in infant formula and a wide range of further food products) and Australia/New Zealand – these are expected to become important future theatres for GOS use, and this will continue to drive global GOS demand
  • Interest arising from the recent IWC Conference Paris in which various speakers identified GOS as a key commercial product for future whey and dairy permeate utilization
  • The growing pool of whey and dairy permeates arising from production of UF-milk, MPC, cheese and casein – with growth expected in these categories, the pressure will remain for future avenues in which to utilise the material
  • New technology providing new applications, enhanced processing, and new product offerings

The report looks at oligosaccharides as a strong growth industry and the role of GOS within this. Indeed, global volume projections are given for oligosaccharides and GOS through to 2018, showing strong growth trends experienced over recent times are expected to continue.

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