Upcoming conference examines controversies and opportunities
The omega-3 industry will come together this coming February in Seattle (Washington, USA) — a region known for its connection to the fishing industry — for the biennial GOED Exchange conference, which takes place on 6–8 February.
GOED Exchange 2018 is the premiere event for the omega-3 industry and brings together experts from around the world to discuss the issues and developments in the global omega-3 business.
The omega-3 industry has grown exponentially during the past few decades on the strength of its science and quality product offerings. With maturity, though, comes new scrutiny, and this conference has been structured to ask the tough questions and work together to find the answers.
For example, a double session focuses on “Omega-3 Controversies,” looking at three important topic areas:
The Omega-3/Omega-6 Ratio: This has been an ongoing debate for years: some scientists believe that the amount of omega-6s needs to be reduced to demonstrate the benefits of omega-3s, whereas others contend that it is simply the amount of omega-3s consumed that’s important; a neutral observer will take a look at the evidence and weigh in.
Oxidation: A misused and misunderstood word to the omega-3 consumer, oxidation is incorrectly being categorised as a safety issue for omega-3s supplements; this session offers expert insight that can clear up the confusion.
Bioavailability: Another recent topic of discussion in the omega-3 industry is the concept of bioavailability and the physical or chemical processes that can enhance EPA and DHA absorption; this session will look at varying points of view and provide an analysis of the world of bioavailability claims that may or may not be supported by science.
Another area that could certainly be classified as controversial is the ongoing conversation about omega-3s in the consumer media.
Like it or not, the media play a crucial role in how our industry is perceived and sensationalist headlines regularly cause consumer confusion.
Yet, it’s difficult to easily translate a scientific message in a world of constant media noise and a soundbite culture. The GOED Exchange brings together two key communicators to discuss how to talk about science to a consumer audience in the midst of current cultural challenges.
As the industry has grown, consumer education has become more important than ever. Yet, reaching the consumer directly is a daunting and expensive tactic, and it’s important to look at other avenues.
Research in more than 20 countries completed by GOED has shown that health practitioners are a top resource for consumers when they are looking for health and wellness advice.
GOED is in the process of undertaking a health practitioner education programme, the details of which will be shared at the GOED Exchange in February.
This session also looks at the market in China, with advice on what influencers need to navigate those challenging shores, and also provides a case study involving a UK organisation that is using a grass roots approach to educate consumers about omega-3s and brain health.
Also on the agenda is examining the research gaps in science, a panel discussion on genetically modified omega-3s from plant sources and a session on how to stimulate growth in the European omega-3 market. Visit www.goedexchange.com for more information.