WIT launches ‘Supplement Certified’ the first nutritional supplement quality and stability standard in an otherwise underregulated industry

In a bid to assist and offer transparency to the circa 2 billion nutritional supplement industry, Professor John Nolan and Dr Alfonso Prado-Cabrero and their colleagues at WIT have established ‘Supplement Certified’ an independent scientific certification for assessing product label claim.

The scientists and researchers at ‘Supplement Certified’ hold over 20 years of academic credibility in the area of assessing nutrition for human function, having built up a unique skillset at WIT’s Nutrition Research Centre Ireland. They hold an exceptional ability to efficiently and effectively analyse the composition of nutritional supplements.

Research carried out to-date by the team at ‘Supplement Certified’ on commercially available nutritional health supplements that are promoted for human function has found that up to 65% do not match label claim.

Professor Nolan says “Our mission is to help consumers have positive outcomes by supporting nutraceutical companies that produce supplements aimed at enhancing human function. A basic requirement for this is that the claimed active ingredients are actually present in the supplements, which are sold and promoted for eye and brain health. The more products we analyse, the more astonishing the findings. Our independent analysis of products and the opportunity to apply a ‘Supplement Certified’ stamp of approval to a product will not only offer consumers peace of mind but also those nutraceutical companies who are working hard to ensure that their products are fit for purpose.”

Dr Alfonso Prado-Cabrero – Senior Scientist and Founder; Professor John M Nolan – Founder and Director

The team at ‘Supplement Certified recognise that there has been exponential growth in consumer demand for nutritional supplements over the last decade and that the industry is not officially regulated worldwide when it comes to verifying product label claim. They, therefore, want to be able to furnish the producers and distributors of nutritional healthcare products and consumers with an independent certificate proving that the product lives up to its label claim.

Speaking about the service Dr Prado-Cabrero said “It is very satisfying to see how our expertise in the analysis of carotenoids and omega-3 fatty acids helps distributors formulate their products and, above all, will ensure that consumers really get what the label says.”

The services provided by Supplement Certified include the provision of access to global thought leaders in the area of nutritional science research and testing. The stages of the process available to nutritional health companies include extensive scientific research performing a delicate process of extraction, separation of components, analysis and testing of active ingredients, reporting and if determined suitable, the certification of nutritional health products for carotenoids and omega-3 fatty acids label claim.

Prof Nolan says, “Our published research [1,2] has already highlighted the issues surrounding commercially available supplements, and also the importance of recommending a supplement that has been independently scientifically tested in terms of efficacy and in terms of meeting its label claim. Supplement Certified is also established to assess the stability of the product over time and will work with companies to provide advice on how to meet standards and label claims, if products do fail following the detailed scientific testing.”

Further details on the service provided by Supplement Certified can be found at www.supplementcertified.ie


1. Prado-Cabrero A, Beatty S, Howard A, Stack J, Bettin P, Nolan JM. Assessment of lutein, zeaxanthin and meso-zeaxanthin concentrations in dietary supplements by chiral high-performance liquid chromatography. European Food Research and Technolology. 2016, 242(4): 599-608

2. Phelan D, Prado-Cabrero A, Nolan JM. Stability of Commercially Available Macular Carotenoid Supplements in Oil and Powder Formulations. Nutrients. 2017, 9(10), 1133