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‘The secret’s out!’ Muscle Milk maker targets active women with Evolve with CLA

By Stephen DANIELLS , 16-Jan-2013
Last updated the 17-Jan-2013 at 14:21 GMT

CytoSport, Inc., maker of Muscle Milk, has launched a new protein shake containing BASF’s CLA (conjugated linoleic acid) for women with active, healthy lifestyles.

The launch of Evolve - a low-calorie, protein-enhanced shake – could be the first of many food and beverage products in 2013 containing CLA, said Laura Troha, Tonalin CLA product manager, BASF Corporation.

“The secret’s out!” Troha told us. “Food and beverage innovators have been closely monitoring the market data showing that consumers are increasingly aware of Tonalin’s effectiveness in improving body shaping. 

“Because Tonalin is the most researched brand of CLA and consumers are asking for it by name as a dietary supplement, food makers recognize its potential for new products.

“Our technical specialists have expertise in formulating Tonalin CLA in a variety of foods and beverages while maintaining the sensory aspects consumers expect, especially taste.  And, that’s because we know that taste trumps all regardless of the noted health benefits.”

Troha added that Evolve is the first product of its kind to be launched with Tonalin CLA in North America, and the first food or beverage with BASF’s CLA to be sold nationally in such a widespread retail market.

Premium

Commenting on CLA, Nikki Brown, CytoSport CMO, said: “We were looking for a premium ingredient that would appeal to women and provide an added functional benefit.

“Tonalin CLA is backed with research and is proven to be safe and efficacious. It not only helps enhance our shakes, but it also provides Evolve with an advantage over other beverage options."

The ingredient

CLA is a fatty acid naturally present in ruminant meat and dairy products. Due to changes in the Western diet, average intake of CLA has fallen; if the fat is removed from a dairy product to make a low fat version that will be acceptable to consumers, CLA is removed along with it.

The ingredient was recently highlighted by market analyst Euromonitor as a nutrient with a “key” role to play in the global weight management market. Numerous studies have shown CLA can help reduce body fat, maintain lean muscle mass and improve body composition.

While it has been in supplements for a number of years, CLA has a much shorter history in food and beverages, having only received GRAS (Generally Recognized as Safe) status in 2008.

Awareness

The packaging for the Evolve product features the Tonalin logo, and this is because the brand resonates with consumers, said BASF’s Troha.

“A recent analysis by the Natural Marketing Institute (NMI) reports that the Tonalin brand comprises 60% of all CLA sales in the U.S. and Canada,” she said.

“Consumers’ continued loyalty to Tonalin CLA is a direct result of the scientific integrity behind the brand, and the reach and power of BASF’s integrated marketing programs. Clearly, our messages resonate with consumers from younger fitness enthusiasts to aging baby boomers.”

Troha added that the company is continuing to look at consumer preferences and to work with brand marketers to pull through its branded CLA sales at the retail level, using a variety of advertising, public relations and marketing programs.

“Awareness for the brand name is evident from ever-increasing activity both from  the Tonalin social media sites and from the Tonalin website where consumers frequently search by the brand name, as opposed to using a general search term like CLA.”

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