The Spanish startup, Baïa, gets authorization to market a new food

The startup, Baïa, specialized in functional nutrition, has just become the first Spanish company to receive authorization from the European Commission to market a new food, in the EU market, under regulation 2015/2283. After eight years of R&D and with the favorable opinion of the European Food Safety Agency (EFSA), which endorses its safety for human consumption, the company now obtains the right to its exclusive marketing, for a period of five years.

The new food in question, authorized as a food supplement and registered by the company as DMB, is made from freeze-dried pulp and skin of Synsepalum dulcificum, a berry endemic to West Africa (popularly known as “miracle berry “ or “miracle fruit“) Which has the surprising property of masking acidic flavors and transforming them into sweets, if consumed prior to eating food and beverages. Its effect has an approximate duration of one hour, but it opens a new horizon of clinical possibilities to treat patients with taste disorders or dietary restrictions.

It is estimated that around 30% of people over 65 years of age suffer from alterations or loss of taste, which in medical terms is known as dysgeusia. Also many cancer patients with radio or chemotherapy treatments suffer from this disorder, which makes them perceive food with metallic flavors and in many cases unpleasant. And currently, for the side effects of COVID-19, Thousands of people have been able to experience some type of taste disorder.

Additionally, there are people with hypersensitivity to acidity in the mouth or lack of saliva, and people who are diabetic, obese or with dietary restrictions who are banned from sugar. For all of them, the sensory complement DMB may represent a new motivation in your diet.

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COVID-19 has helped to make visible and sensitize about a problem that until now was rather invisible. Dysgeusia is directly related to weight loss, mood and quality of life, aspects that are essential for a cancer patient in their recovery. Some chefs such as Jordi Roca or Ramón Freixa have created menus, recipes and sensory experiences to help these people regain their taste, desire and satisfaction in eating. Our goal is to provide the first scientifically designed sensory supplement for the management of these disorders, which can be recommended by the specialist “, explains Loan Bensadon, co-founder of Baïa.

For sale in pharmacies

The product is obtained grinding the pulp (containing miraculin, a protein capable of transforming the perception of taste) and the skin (rich in antioxidant compounds such as polyphenols) of the berry. This puree is dehydrated by lyophilization to obtain a powdered ingredient that will be marketed in the form of chewable tablets. The company expects that they can reach Spanish pharmacies during the first quarter of 2022.

For this, Baïa is in full talks with investors and possible partners in the field of clinical nutrition, consumer healthcare and food. It currently has a round of 3.5 million euros open that will allow it to address, among other things, the arrival on the market of this new food with enormous potential. In this first phase, its target markets are Spain, Portugal, France, Italy and Germany.

Specialized nutrition platform

On the other hand, its objective is to strengthen the connection between its R&D line, focused on the special properties of this berry, with its other line of business, an online store of functional foods and nutritional supplements designed to promote well-being and a healthy lifestyle. “We want to become a personalized nutrition company for health care through clean label food products with high added value “, says Guillermo Milans del Bosch, co-founder of Baïa.

Precisely, to be able to scale its marketplace and turn it into a digital platform for specialized and personalized nutrition, with more products of its own formulation for health care and a clear focus on functional foods and nutritional supplements, during the first half of 2022 Baïa will participate in the acceleration program in phase growth of Lanzadera, the business accelerator created by Juan Roig.

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