TerraVia Holdings, Inc. made the decision to suspend supply to Soylent of all its ingredients, effective immediately.
The decision to suspend supply is based on the high level of concern that Soylent’s actions in addressing its issues with Powder 1.6 indicate a pattern of behavior that is damaging TerraVia’s business. In accordance with food industry best practice, TerraVia has tried to work collaboratively with Soylent to appropriately investigate the cause of GI issues experienced by a small number of their customers. To TerraVia’s knowledge, there has not been a rigorous investigation of the root causes of the GI problems before releasing a new version with Powder 1.7, and, to date, Soylent has made no data available that would substantiate its decision to remove algal flour from its products.
“We are surprised and disappointed that Soylent rushed to imply that algal flour is to blame and removed the ingredient without providing any evidence that they conducted a full investigation of their formulations and the more than 40 ingredients in their products, as would be standard practice in the food industry,” said TerraVia CEO Apu Mody.
According to food industry expert, George A. Burdock, Ph.D., “This conclusion is premature without additional investigation,” and, “I do not believe whole algal flour or any single ingredient (at normal, sub-clinical use levels) can be identified as the causative agent - there is just no evidence to indicate a cause-effect relationship for a single ingredient in such complex mixture.”
TerraVia’s whole algal flour is classified as Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) in compliance with FDA regulations concerning substances for food use. TerraVia’s algal flour has been used in more than 20 million servings of products and has never been shown to be the cause of adverse reactions.