The consumer industry continues to be a hotbed of innovation, with activity driven by health and wellness, taste, and convenience, and the growing importance of alternative proteins, food safety and transparency, and personalised nutrition. In the last three years alone, there have been over 450,000 patents filed and granted in the consumer industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Health & Wellness in Consumer: Infant food formulations.
According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which uses over 110,000 patents to analyse innovation intensity for the consumer industry, there are 40+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.
Infant food formulations is a key emerging innovation area in health & wellness
Packaged food specially designed and marketed for consumption by babies and infants under 12 months of age is classified as infant formula food. These foods that can either be in powder form (to be mixed with water) or liquid form (with or without additional water), are usually meant for bottle/cup feeding.
GlobalData’s analysis also uncovers the companies at the forefront of each infant food formulations and assesses the potential reach and impact of their patenting activity across different applications and geographies. According to GlobalData, there are 50+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established consumer companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of infant food formulations.
Key players in infant food formulations – a disruptive innovation in the consumer industry
‘Application diversity’ measures the number of different applications identified for each relevant patent and broadly splits companies into either ‘niche’ or ‘diversified’ innovators.
‘Geographic reach’ refers to the number of different countries each relevant patent is registered in and reflects the breadth of geographic application intended, ranging from ‘global’ to ‘local’.
Patent volumes related to infant food formulations
|Company||Total patents (2010 - 2021)||Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies|
|Danone||480||Unlock company profile|
|Nestle||266||Unlock company profile|
|Chr. Hansen Holding||266||Unlock company profile|
|Abbott Laboratories||160||Unlock company profile|
|Reckitt Benckiser Group Plc||122||Unlock company profile|
|Novo Nordisk Foundation||96||Unlock company profile|
|Morinaga Milk Industry||95||Unlock company profile|
|Meiji Holdings||92||Unlock company profile|
|Kraft Heinz||77||Unlock company profile|
|Yakult Honsha||59||Unlock company profile|
|DuPont de Nemours||43||Unlock company profile|
|Zuivelcooperatie FrieslandCampina UA||34||Unlock company profile|
|Procter & Gamble||34||Unlock company profile|
|Archer Daniels Midland||30||Unlock company profile|
|Symrise||29||Unlock company profile|
|Megmilk Snow Brand||29||Unlock company profile|
|Valio||29||Unlock company profile|
|a2 Milk||26||Unlock company profile|
|Precigen||26||Unlock company profile|
|Fonterra Co-operative Group||25||Unlock company profile|
|Centro de Investigacion en Alimentacion y Desarrollo AC||23||Unlock company profile|
|Kerry Group plc||21||Unlock company profile|
|BioGaia||19||Unlock company profile|
|Eurolactis Group||18||Unlock company profile|
|Asahi Group Holdings||18||Unlock company profile|
|Inner Mongolia Yili Industrial Group||16||Unlock company profile|
|Geo-Poland Sp ZOO||16||Unlock company profile|
|Dairy A Day||15||Unlock company profile|
|Royal DSM||14||Unlock company profile|
|L’Institut National Recherche Agronomique||13||Unlock company profile|
|Teagasc||12||Unlock company profile|
|CJ CheilJedang||12||Unlock company profile|
|COFCO||11||Unlock company profile|
|INGREDIA||11||Unlock company profile|
|Roquette Freres||11||Unlock company profile|
|Iamsmpany||10||Unlock company profile|
|Bright Dairy & Food||10||Unlock company profile|
|Cell Biotech||9||Unlock company profile|
|Dicofarm||9||Unlock company profile|
|ActogeniX||8||Unlock company profile|
|Granarolo||8||Unlock company profile|
|Givaudan||7||Unlock company profile|
|Tetra Laval International||7||Unlock company profile|
|Micropharma||7||Unlock company profile|
|Wakamoto Pharmaceutical||7||Unlock company profile|
|Swedish Orphan Biovitrum||7||Unlock company profile|
|Hangzhou Wahaha Group||6||Unlock company profile|
|Morinaga Milk Industry||6||Unlock company profile|
|Yuhan||6||Unlock company profile|
|Otsuka Holdings||6||Unlock company profile|
Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics
Danone is one of the leading patent filers in infant food formulations. Some other key patent filers in the space are Nestle, Chr. Hansen, and Abbott Laboratories. Danone recently launched a new dairy and plants blend baby formula to suit vegetarian, plant-based, or flexitarian diets. This product is claimed to be the first blended baby formula containing more than half (60%) plant-based proteins. The plant protein is sourced from non-GMO/high-quality soy protein, and other plant ingredients include vegetable oils, DHA, and chicory root fibres.
In terms of application diversity, ActogeniX leads the pack. Precigen and Micropharma stood in the second and third positions, respectively. By means of geographic reach, a2 Milk held the top position, followed by Roquette Freres and INGREDIA.
Infant food formulations act as a complete substitute for human milk, thus meeting the nutritional requirements of babies under 12 months. While it is a necessary requirement for less-lactating mothers, it serves as a convenience for working mothers, and is therefore gaining fast popularity. To further understand the key themes and technologies disrupting the consumer industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Consumer.