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Business OverviewNutraceutical Business

The term "Nutraceuticals" was created by combining the words "nutrition" and "pharmaceuticals." It was coined in 1989 by Dr. Stephen L. DeFelice in the U.S. and refers to foods and drinks that have a scientific base and contribute to the maintenance of everyday health. Our range of consumer products created since the 1970s fit this definition well and led to us adopting the term to describe our consumer business. We are continuing to develop innovative products based on scientific evidence that help make people around the world healthier and more active.

Developing original products for maintaining and improving health

Building upon our solid foundation of scientific R&D, we have developed a range of unique consumer products for the maintenance and promotion of people's health. Over the past few decades we have created several new markets by carrying out continuous activities to inform and educate consumers on the value of products born under our own ideas, the likes of which they may not have seen before.

POCARI SWEAT was first developed as a health drink, based on the concept of a "drinkable IV". It serves to smoothly replace water and electrolytes (ions) lost through sweat. POCARI SWEAT ION WATER, is a more refreshing, clean-tasting beverage to optimally maintain ion balance and hydration in both active exercise and daily consumption scenarios. This thirst quenching beverage supports optimum day-to-day condition.

In 2016, an "edible hydration" supplement, POCARI SWEAT Jelly, was launched. This offers a convenient way to stay hydrated, simultaneously satisfying hunger while supplying water and electrolytes. Also in 2018, POCARI SWEAT ICE SLURRY, a beverage that “cools from the core”, was developed and launched to support activities in hot environments as a new countermeasure to cope with heat disorders.

ORONAMIN C DRINK, a unique carbonated nutritional drink for everyday consumption, marked its 50th anniversary in 2015. This refreshing vitamin drink continues to energize people of all ages in nine countries and regions around the world*1.

The Calorie Mate line of foods, carefully developed under the concept of nutritionally balanced foods, includes block, jelly and liquid products. As eating styles diversify, the Calorie Mate range offers effortless consumption of five major nutrients by anyone, anywhere, at any time.

Otsuka Pharmaceutical has been exploring the potential of soybeans for many years. With the goal of creating a product that can be eaten easily anywhere at any time, we developed SOYJOY, a healthy snack bar made without flour, using whole soy beans (excluding the husk), combined with various ingredients and baked. In 2016, we expanded the range with the launch of SOYJOY Crispy, which has a light, crunchy texture and the delicious flavour of puffed soy.

Products developed through scientific research

Focusing on the advantages of equol, a compound produced when soy isoflavones are metabolized by intestinal bacteria, Otsuka Pharmaceutical released EQUELLE in April 2014. In 2018, we released EQUELLE Gelée, a jelly-type beverage that contains collagen, calcium and other beneficial ingredients in addition to soy metabolite equol. EQUELLE Brand helps support women's health and beauty.

Knowing that both athletes who push their bodies to the limit, and people who experience daily stress due to work or study are putting their health at risk, we created BODYMAINTÉ, a “protective beverage” which contains Otsuka Pharmaceutical’s proprietary ingredient Lactobacillus B240*2, which has shown to work to protect the body from day-to-day health risks. BODYMAINTÉ Jelly has earned a following since its 2017 launch –mainly among athletes concerned about their physical condition at sporting events. In 2018, BODYMAINTÉ Drink was launched.

In accordance with Japanese government guidelines for Foods for Specified Health Uses (FOSHU) and the new Foods with Function Claims system introduced in 2015, easy-to-understand labeling contributes to consumer safety and facilitates appropriate product selection.

Otsuka Pharmaceutical's selection of Foods for Specified Health Uses includes the Fibe-Mini dietary fiber beverage to promote intestinal function and Kenja-no Shokutaku Double Support, which slows the body's post-meal absorption of sugar and lipids.

Otsuka markets ten products labeled as Foods with Function Claims. This includes five products from the Nature Made series of vitamins and supplements: Ginkgo Biloba for improvement of memory acuity, Lutein to support contrast sensitivity (the eye's ability to distinguish light and dark), Astaxanthin to support the eye's ability to focus, and Super Fish Oil and Fish Oil Pearl for the inhibition of triglyceride levels in the blood.
Omugi Gohan and Omugi Gohan Japanese-Style provide an easy way to benefit from barley β-glucan.
Both Amino Value 4000 and Amino Value Powder 8000 contain BCAA as a functional ingredient, helping relieve fatigue following exercise. Kenja-no-kaimin Sleep Rhythm Support, with ingredients derived from asparagus, helps settle the body's sleep/wake rhythm, improves the quality of sleep and supports refreshed, revitalized awakening.

The men's skin care brand UL·OS was developed as a result of our focus on skin health, through the integration of our unique ideas and technology. In 2017, we released UL·OS Face Wash for Skin Care to support all men wanting healthier skin.

  1. 1As of the end of 2017
  2. 2Lactic acid bacteria isolated by Tokyo University of Agriculture. Effectiveness confirmed by Otsuka Pharmaceutical and Kumamoto Prefectural University.

    (As of July 2019)

Learn about our Nutraceutical Business in 6 minutes (Japanese narration, English subtitles available)

Focus Areas

Developing original products based on scientific evidence for maintaining and promoting health.