- Danone SA announced an expansion of its one-year partnership with Luminous seed, creator of the Forager artificial intelligence, which maps and predicts the health impact of compounds of plant origin. Over the next few years, the two companies will explore the potential of common crops and lesser-known plants, and create a model for a health-oriented and regenerating global food system, while accelerating the development of plant-based products by Danone. .
- Over the past year, companies have identified biological links between bioactives found in Danone’s raw plant sources and health. For example, Forager was able to find 10 times more bioactives in a single plant than previously known, and seven new health attributes, according to a press release on the announcement.
- The announcement of the expanded partnership with Brightseed comes shortly after Danone announced, in its latest call for results, plans for a ‘herbal 2.0’ platform, including a reformulation of its alternatives to milk, while it reaches achieve his goal of triple its sales in the plant space by 2025.
The promise of plant-based foods has been centered on sustainability and health. Danone’s expanded partnership with Brightseed allows it to further emphasize this connection.
In a statement, Taisa Hansen, senior vice president of research and innovation at Danone Nutricia Research, put the potential of the partnership even higher, noting that it could help the global food system move from maximizing crop yields for improved sustainability and health.
âForager provides unprecedented visibility into transformative power plants that can have on human health,â she said. “Ultimately, our goal is to make this information non-proprietary so that humanity can benefit from this collective wisdom and move faster towards a healthier and more regenerating food future.”
Luminous seed Co-founder and COO Sofia Elizondo described the company’s Forager as a “search engine” with a fine-tooth comb thousands of phytonutrients to discover those who might have the greatest health and nutritional benefits. In its press release on the expansion of the partnership, Danone noted that less than 1% of these bioactives are known to science, and only 12 plants, including crops such as corn, rice, wheat, soybeans and oats, make up 75% of the global food system.
Danone hopes to use Forager to better understand how these crops maintain their health integrity and to examine other herbal innovations. With this information, the partners could discover a new functional food segment that Danone could market globally.
This expanded partnership with Brightseed comes at a pivotal moment for Danone. Last week, the company announced that it would revamp its herbal platform and introduce new âDairy-like technologyâ that will improve the taste and texture of its Silk, So Delicious and Alpro dairy alternative lines. It also plans to increase its sales of plant-based yogurts, ice creams, cheeses and creams. Having an AI-powered fast lane will only further grease the wheels of innovation for Danone.