Approval of vitamin K2 for childhood and maternal milk powders in China has signified the country's growing awareness that the vitamin is not just for the elderly
Kappa Bioscience’s K2VITAL vitamin K2 MK-7 has recently been approved in China for use in children's health and maternal milk powders. It has also been approved as safe for use in Mexico.
These approvals expand the global footprint of vitamin K2, notably in the early-life and K2 food fortification categories.
The approvals in China are also significant because they represent the first Chinese approval of synthetically-manufactured vitamin K2 MK-7. Synthetic K2 now represents over 50% of global sales. This growth has been driven by synthetic's high-purity, by cost efficiencies and consumer demand for products that deliver on label claim.
This development reflects the market shift toward synthetic K2 and creates new options for Chinese brands. The approvals also cover microencapsulated K2VITAL DELTA, the stability solution for products that include minerals.
The Chinese approvals also highlight an emerging K2 food fortification trend. While the K2 market almost doubles each year, this growth has been driven by traditional capsule and tablet products. New growth, however, is frequently generated through innovative dosing forms and increasingly in food fortification.
Powders are a frequent entry product and K2 in dairy products is increasingly common because of K2's complimentary benefits to calcium and vitamin D3. The K2 beverage market is also growing, notably in markets where deficiencies in milk consumption exist among children.
'The approval of synthetically-produced K2 MK-7 in China validates the reasons for K2VITAL market growth globally,” said Peter Wisler, distributor liaison for Kappa. “But what is really interesting is that it demonstrates how Asia is perhaps ahead of World markets in recognising K2 for children’s health.”
Wisler said that K2-fortified beverages for children are common in markets like Vietnam where milk consumption is low as K2 plays an important role in bone growth in children. He added that powder and beverage formats are increasingly being used as a solution.
Vitamin K2 supports bone and heart health by activating proteins which mediate healthy and unhealthy calcium deposit. The K2 market historically skewed towards older consumers and K2 is frequently associated with health benefits related to osteoporosis and cardiovascular disease.
These approvals also signify growing awareness that vitamin K2 is important throughout life, and specifically for growth and bone development in children.
The approval for products for expectant and breast-feeding mothers is validated by multiple clinical studies which demonstrate that both mother and child have enhanced calcium-mediation needs during this period.