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Gut unhappy? There’s now a probiotic designed specifically for Thais
TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 22, 2022
Winona Feminine, which specialises in feminine cleansing products, is collaborating with the leading pharmacy chain Bangkok Drugstore to expand the reach of its new Winona Probio supplement.
Nopparat Suksaranludee, the founder of Winona Feminine, told the press on Tuesday that the probiotic was the result of more than 20 years of research and had been bred especially to match the physical conditions of Thai women.
She added that Winona Probio had won a very positive response when it was launched in May via the Winona Feminine website, prompting her to start seeking distribution partners.
“Our partners need to be experts who know how to store the product properly and can explain the usage correctly. Winona Probio needs to be stored in cold temperatures to keep the bacteria alive,” Nopparat explained.
She said that though most Thai women are aware of the benefits of probiotics, such as better immunity and prevention of some vaginal infections, most probiotics sold locally are imported.
However, she said, upon meeting researchers from the National Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (BIOTEC) as part of a Thailand Centre of Excellence for Life Sciences project, she learned of Thailand’s first probiotic strain – the Lactobacillus paracasei MSMC39-1.
She explained that this probiotic bacteria had been bred specifically to work effectively on Thai digestive systems, which makes it very effective with few side effects.
“We already have some cleansers that help provide immediate relief for feminine problems, but Winona Probio prevents these problems from occurring in the first place,” she said.
Probiotics are often described as “good” or “friendly” bacteria that help restore the natural balance in the digestive system when it has been disrupted by an illness or treatment.
She added that her company is working with Biotec to develop a second probiotic breed that can help reduce cholesterol, boost antioxidants and kickstart the metabolism.
“This should be released by the end of this year,” she said.
Winona Feminine was founded in September 2016 with the goal of producing and developing personal care and cosmetics products, with a special focus on feminine hygiene.
Though most of the company’s products are sold locally, it has started entering the export market.
Nopparat said she plans to start selling Winona Probio in Asean countries, namely Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar, Vietnam, Singapore, the Philippines, Indonesia, and Brunei, in a year.
She said the export of Winona Probio will be limited to Southeast Asia because these countries share similar cuisines, weather and lifestyles.
However, she said, the cleansing products will be targeted at a wider market and sold in countries like China, South Africa, Bangladesh, the United Arab Emirates and Oman to name a few.