At present, formula-fed babies' diets do not take account of this, and they are usually given a 'static' diet during their first six months.
Having identified that the protein content of breast milk changes constantly during this period, Arla Foods Ingredients built the product around its Lacprodan portfolio of protein ingredients, which can be blended in varying proportions to create staged infant formulas that mimic the nutritional profile of breast milk closely.
'Meet the needs'
Extracted from whey proteins, Lacprodan ingredients are designed to provide the ideal amino acid profile to meet the needs of developing infants. This means formula manufacturers can reduce the overall quantity of protein in their products to levels closer to those found in breast milk, but still provide all the nutrients formula-fed infants need to develop healthily and grow at a similar rate to breast-fed infants.
Pernille Hostrup, business development manager at Arla Foods Ingredients, said: "Traditionally, infant formulas for new-born babies have been much higher in protein than breast milk is, which means formula-fed babies typically ingest between 50% and 80% more protein than breast-fed infants. This often results in more rapid growth in bottle-fed babies and there is strong scientific evidence that this can lead to obesity and other health concerns in later life.
"But by adding the right blend of our Lacprodan proteins to a basic formula recipe, manufacturers can now develop age-specific formula products that deliver the correct levels of nutrients to meet a growing infant's true needs."