Vitafoods Asia 2019 Conference Summits

Digestive health: The science behind your gut

Wednesday 25 September, 13:30 – 17:00

With the health and wellness market expected to grow at an average of 8% in 2020, Asia is now on top of the agenda for many companies. Gain a holistic view of the digestive health market, mechanisms of action, fermented products and more, to reassess the benefits of different ingredients aimed at a healthier gut.

Chair: Heather Granato, Vice President - Content, Health Nutrition Network (US)

Sponsored by:


13:30 - 14:00

Highlighting the key trends and future directions for innovation in the digestive health space

  • Digestive health is increasingly being recognised as having a positive impact on overall well-being
  • Exploring how consumers are embracing a wider variety of products to achieve gut wellness
  • Consumers look for products that are natural and easy to understand which presents opportunity for fermented food and beverages

Speaker:  Nicole Jansen, Insights & Innovation, Innova Market Insights (Netherlands)


14:00 - 14:30

Digestive tract discomfort: an opportunity for probiotics

  • Relieving abdominal pain and probiotic mechanisms        
  • Probiotics relieving constipation and their mechanism.        
  • Upper-digestive tract discomfort and probiotics

Speaker: Dr. Arthur Ouwehand, Technical Fellow - Global Health & Nutrition Sciences, DuPont Nutrition & Biosciences (Finland)


14:30 - 15:00

Highlighting the role of food and nutrient synergy for digestive health and vitamin as well as mineral absorption

  • Reviewing the impact of different habitual diets and nutrients from plant and animal sources on digestive health and function.        
  • Exploring the considerable differences in digestive processes of vitamins and minerals from food and chemical sources, including ferritin iron, pro vitamin A, and folate.        
  • Outlining the importance of food and nutrient synergy during the digestive stages for efficient absorption of vitamins and minerals.

Speaker: Dr Madhavan Nair, Scientist, Retd. National Institute of Nutrition, Vice President, Nutrition Society of India (India) 


15:00 - 15:30

Refreshment break


15:30 - 16:00

Exploring the application of probiotics : a gut health journey

  • From a culture collection to identification and characterisation of probiotics
  • Potential mechanisms of action of probiotics promoting digestive health         
  • Some examples of current translational research with probiotics

Speaker: Dr Nabil Bosco, Healthy ageing team leader, Nestle Research (Singapore) 


16:00 - 16:30

Presenting insights from half a century of research on the health benefits of the probiotic Bifidobacterium longum

  • Exploring the functional health benefits of the probiotic strain, Bifidobacterium longum BB536, in humans
  • Understanding how this probiotic confers multiple beneficial effects on humans through its interaction with the gut microbiota        
  • Outlining key clinical findings of Bifidobacterium longum that provide proof of efficacy for a better-informed application of human probiotics

Speaker: Chyn Boon Wong, Research Associate, Morinaga Nutritional Foods (Asia Pacific) Pte. Ltd. (Singapore) 


16:30 - 17:00

Exploring the opportunities of bio-processed okara for value-added healthy food products

  • Exploiting biotechnology to break down and convert macromolecules in okara using selected combinations of enzymes and/or microorganisms.        
  • Highlighting the advantages of biocatalysts breaking down insoluble dietary fibre and protein into soluble fibre/sugars and peptides/amino acids, reducing gritty mouthfeel and enhancing digestibility.        
  • Developing vegan (non-dairy) probiotic drinks containing dietary fibre, free amino acids and free isoflavones, helping to maintain a range of health benefits

Speaker: Dr Lin  Jing, Researcher, Food Science and Technology Programme, National University of Singapore (Singapore)