Vitux launches health supplements production at new Windsor plant

Dave Waddell/The Windsor Star

Norwegian health supplements company Vitux has launched production of its ConCordix soft gel tablets with Windsor-based manufacturing partner SofTab Technologies.

The local plant is the first outside of Norway for Vitux and will supply the North American market.

SofTab Technologies will serve as a contract manufacturer for Vitux and has begun production with 15 employees. Vitux has also established its Canadian headquarters in Windsor with five employees.

“This is a celebration of a moment that has taken us 10 years to get here,” said SoftTab Technologies’ president Vancho Cirovski.

“It’s taken time for the concept to come together to make a deal with two partners in two different countries. Our common interest is to do something disruptive in the medical field.

“This is the evolution of the dosage delivery system.”

Refitting approximately 20,000 square feet of unused space in the Medicap Laboratories plant and installing equipment cost up to $10 million. Cirovski said SofTab covered about $4 million of that with Vitux committing around $6 million.

The provincial government also contributed $926,640 in a low-interest loan to the company through its Southwestern Ontario Development Fund.

The plant will produce soft chew gels using Vitux’s patented ConCordix technology.

The nano emulsion delivery system mimics the way the body absorbs nutrients from food, delivering nutrients more quickly into the body.

The soft chews are all-natural and plant-based products without sugar and allow for 40 per cent more absorption of vitamins and nutrients while not having the distasteful flavour some wellness products have.

“This plant is using state-of-the-art technology that’s very different than what’s being used in the industry,” said Vitux CEO Klaus Neumann. “We hold more than 40 patents for the technology.”

The unique machinery, which will produce about six million boxes annually containing 30 soft gel chews each, is made in Germany. There are only three such machines in existence with the other two located at Vitux’s plant in Norway.

Cirovski said SofTab Technologies is already laying the groundwork to add a second machine line and another 12 to 15 employees at its Windsor plant within two years based on the interest displayed by North American pharmaceutical companies. He said he’d liked to see Vitux add a research and development component to the Windsor site.

“Much of what we’re going to do is for export,” Cirovski said.

“I’m getting a lot of phone calls from Canadian companies about, ‘Can you formulate this or that product?’ There’s some really exciting stuff.

“We have a capacity of six million boxes, so we have to be careful who we partner with and that’s up to Vitux. We have to start building more capacity.”

Neumann said he’ll return to the area in September to attend a trade show in Toronto where Vitux will announce its first major partnership with a Canadian company. That should result in products using the ConCordix technology to be on shelves later this fall.

“It will allow people to go to bricks-and-mortar stores like Shoppers to get products,” Neumann said. “Currently, you have to get them online.”

Neumann said Windsor was a good fit for Vitux due to its location, logistics, talent pool, pharmaceutical history and the fit with the local SofTab ownership group that also includes director of research and quality Darcy Haggith and Medicap’s owner Mani Patel.

Currently, Vitux’s biggest North American markets are California, Oregon, Utah and the southern U.S. Neumann added the company is also eyeing a move into the Southeast Asia marketplace.

“North America is an interesting marketplace in which you need to be differentiated,” said Neumann, who has seen Vitux’s revenue grow from $20 million in 2021 to $30 million last year.

“We see great opportunities. Our process can be adapted for use to a number of other things.

“This partnership is a way to spread wellness without limitations.”