Novartis and Quaker form functional food company
On February 10, the companies announced the formation of Altus Food
Company, a joint venture to develop and market functional food products
in the US, Canada, and Mexico. The company will be financed and operated
equally by both companies. Altus will introduce products for women,
children, athletes, and older adults into food, drug, and mass channels
by late 2000 or early 2001. The Swiss pharmaceutical company Novartis
made its first move into the functional food arena last November with
the launch of the Aviva line of products in the UK and Switzerland.
The Chicago-based Quaker Oats Company markets the Gatorade brand of
sports beverages, as well as cereals bearing the FDA-approved health
claim linking oatbran/oatmeal to a reduced risk of heart disease. Novartis
and Quaker estimate the size of the functional food market in the US
at between $10-$20 billion, with an annual growth rate of 10%.
The Tan Sheet, February 14, 2000.