Publication Details

Probst, Y. (2008). Industry syndicates in functional foods: evaluating existing models for the development of future projects. Nutrition and Dietetics, 65 (Suppl 3), S94-S100.


The syndicate model developed by the National Centre of Excellence in Functional Foods enables a number of companies to work together in a pre-competitive space, leveraging their investment. Companies have access to a wide range of research knowledge and skills for a portion of what it would cost to complete the entire project as a single entity. By 2007, the Centre had run three separate syndicate projects each with different models. Both food and pharmaceutical companies have participated in the projects. This paper reports on an evaluation of the Functional Foods for Healthy Ageing and Functional Foods for Appetite Control projects conducted during 2007 with the aim of re-developing the syndicate model for future projects. The evaluations were conducted with an external interviewer and followed a structured interview approach via telephone. The companies participating in these syndicate projects were favourable to the model being used for future projects due to the ability to interact with other companies, value for their research dollar and the access to research and development resources. Regular communications and a company-driven approach were favoured though a dedicated staff member was identified as needed for these projects. A new model for the syndicate projects was developed utilising the feedback. The primary modifications were a change from group ideation to individualised company ideation as well as the management and planning for the projects. The Centre will incorporate these changes in two future syndicate projects: Functional Foods for Cognitive Health and Functional Foods for Gut Health.



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