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What is ‘active bifidus'?

‘Active bifidus' is purely a phrase used in advertising, without any scientific meaning. The phrase implies that the product is made with or contains, bifidobacteria. Bifidobacteria are a group of intestinal bacteria, to which health-promoting qualities are attributed. Products with living bifidobacteria are constituents of the probiotics group of functional foods.

‘Active bifidus' as such means nothing. It does not indicate the specific bacterial strain used, how many are present, if they are alive or what kind of (health-promoting) activity this strain is supposed to have. All these aspects are necessary to qualify a product as ‘probiotic.' As it is mainly used in relation to dairy products, it has as much scientific value as to say that the product contains milk.

For a producer to make proper claims and statements, specific EU regulations apply, with special emphasis on the proven health-promoting activities. As ‘active bifidus' is no health claim, it can be used arbitrarily.


European Masters Degree in Food Studies - an Educational Journey

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