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Sportification: presenting new opportunities to food manufacturers in Thailand

BENEO aims to educate food manufacturers on sports nutrition 
at Food Ingredients Asia 2019 (11th – 13th September 2019), Booth H22 

Bangkok, Thailand, 10 September 2019 ― The growing interest in sports is driving the sports nutrition market in Thailand. At Fi Asia 2019, BENEO, a leader in functional ingredients, is taking on the challenge of helping consumers lead healthier, more active lives. Noting the rise in more mainstream sports food and drinks, Christian Philippsen, Managing Director, BENEO Asia Pacific, says that a different approach to sports nutrition is needed. 

The growing emphasis on sports, health and wellness, has not been lost in the nutrition field. There are many products tailored to sports professionals, but these may not meet the needs of consumers who are looking for a healthier diet that supports their active lifestyle. The food industry needs to rise to the challenge of helping consumers meet their increasing desire to lead more active lives coupled with better nutrition,” he says.

Christian Philippsen, Managing Director, BENEO Asia Pacific

Getting it right – the different needs of casual sports enthusiasts and hardcore athletes

Based on a study by Health Focus International, 57% of the survey participants in Thailand always or usually choose foods and/or beverages that improve their energy level[1]. However, many sports products that are designed to increase energy, including sports drinks, gels and bars in the market contain ‘fast carbohydrates’ such as maltodextrin, glucose syrup and sucrose, which releases glucose into the bloodstream quickly to provide a quick boost of energy. This release of glucose into the bloodstream at a fast rate is fine for those in need of instant energy for short-burst intensive athletic training, but it isn’t ideal for those engaged in traditional activity. This is because high glycaemic products can trigger large peaks and troughs in blood glucose and insulin levels, and generally suppress fat oxidation. For these consumers, a low glycaemic carbohydrate that has a lower impact on blood sugar levels is preferable, as it doesn’t just sustain energy, but also promotes fat burning, supporting weight loss goals.

Wanpen Silavanichayakul Country Sales Manager for the Food Ingredient Division in DPO Thailand

BENEO is working closely with food manufacturers to create products that meet the specific needs of the casual fitness user, using the slow release carbohydrate, Palatinose™. Derived from sugar beet, Palatinose™ is fully digested at a slower rate so glucose is released into the bloodstream in small quantities.

Ideal for use in a wide range of sports nutrition products, Palatinose™ provides full carbohydrate energy in a sustained way, eliminating unwanted “boost and crash” blood sugar spikes, and helping to burn fat more effectively. An increased fat burning rate means that the body burns fat for energy, thus allowing active consumers to draw on their carbohydrate reserves for longer. Palatinose™ delivers the energy the body needs to perform – whether the person is a professional athlete or someone aiming to make it through a busy and demanding day. It enables food and drink producers to create a wide range of sportified products, as it has a natural, mild sugar-like taste and sweetness.

In addition, Palatinose™ also ensures that isotonic drinks remain stable during shelf life.

Thailand – an increasingly sporty nation

Sportification is becoming more than just a buzzword in Thailand, impacting the everyday lives and diets of consumers in the country, and going hand-in-hand with King Rama X’s emphasis and encouragement on sports. His passion for physical activity is fueling sports to become more of a central component in Thai life – a glue that holds the people together.

As more sports nutrition products become available to mainstream consumers, the sports market in Thailand is forecast to reach 4,292,820,000 Thai baht in 2019 and 6,773,650,000 Thai baht in 2023. Since the demand is already here, food manufacturers need to step up with more products. This can be done by adding sports variants to their ranges that address different consumer needs, thereby responding to this demand for sports nutrition amongst mainstream consumers in Thailand and the rest of the world.

BENEO will be exhibiting together with their local partner, DPO (Thailand) at Food Ingredients Asia 2019, taking place in Bangkok, Thailand, from 11-13 September 2019 at the Bangkok International Trade and Exhibition Centre, to share with visitors innovative solutions to make food products healthier using naturally functional ingredients. The experts will demonstrate how the industry can use functional carbohydrates such as Palatinose™ to create innovative sportified food and drink products that are relevant and appealing to everyone.

For further information on BENEO and its ingredients, or to meet some of the company’s nutritional, technical and market experts, visit BENEO at Food Ingredients Asia this year at booth H22.

For further information on BENEO and its ingredients, please visit: and or follow BENEO on Twitter: @_BENEO or LinkedIn:

About BENEO 
BENEO offers functional ingredients derived from chicory roots, beet sugar, rice and wheat. BENEO is the ideal partner to help improve a product in its nutritional and technological characteristics. Key nutritional benefits are ‘less fat’, ‘less sugar’, ‘less calories’, ‘added fibre’, ‘gluten-free’ and dairy alternatives as well as energy management, digestive, bone and dental health. Key technological benefits focus on taste and texture improvements. Through a unique chain of expertise, including the BENEO-Institute that provides decisive insights into nutrition science and legislation, and the BENEO-Technology Center that consults in application technology, BENEO actively supports customers in the development of more balanced and healthy food products. BENEO is a division of the Südzucker Group that employs more than 1000 people and has production units in Belgium, Chile, Germany and Italy.

[1] Survey in Thailand, conducted by Health Focus International 2018, with 500 participants

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