Growing awareness for natural products
It has long been known that collagen peptides have a beneficial effect on human health. Almost ten centuries ago, abbess and scholar Hildegard von Bingen was already studying extracts from animal tissue and had recognised their use as a remedy for joint complaints. In traditional Asian culture, collagen is used in cosmetics because it helps keep the skin young and tight and has an overall effect against skin aging.
In Europe, collagen peptides were first industrially manufactured in about the year 1947, but at first only to a minor degree. In the early 1970s, collagen peptides began to be used in dietary products as a substitute for sugar and fat.
In the late 1970s, the demand for collagen peptides grew significantly. The reason can be seen that in these days the today called “high protein diets” became popular. Collagen peptides are used in this diets as a high value source of animal proteins which is necessary in calorie reduction diets.
Parallel to this, collagen peptides became an ever more popular constituent of cosmetic products. They also came into widespread use as a source of protein to enrich various foods at this time.
Further, it had been discovered that by adding collagen peptides to various meat and sausage products, their salt content could be reduced without a loss of flavour.
At the end of the 1970s, ever more information became available about the positive effect of collagen peptides on the joints. The first scientific studies were carried out in this area in 1985. Finally, there was also evidence of a positive effect on osteoarthritis. Today, this has become the largest area of application for collagen peptides worldwide, next to its uses in the beauty sector.
Today, consumers are more sophisticated and better informed than ever before and there is a growing demand for healthy and natural foods.
The trend is for functional foodstuffs, because in addition to their inherent nutritional value, they also offer added value: for example, they ensure that the body is supplied with the optimal amount of vitamins, protein and fibre.
In this, the focus is on energy supply, bones and joints, heart, intestinal relief and relaxation.
Due to the demographic development towards an increasingly older population, there will be a dramatic increase in the number of bone and joint disorders in the near future. Functional foodstuffs could help counteract these health problems through daily nutrition.
The same is true for outward signs of aging. Since the population is increasingly striving to retain a youthful appearance, there will be a significant increase in the demand for skin, hair and nail care products in the future. The potential of peptides tailored to meet these needs has still not been completely exhausted today.