Parents from all over the world are choosing to feed their babies with European baby formulas, this is partially due to some European food standards surpassing American standards in terms of quality and control.
Many European infant formula brands, including those from Germany, are made with high-quality ingredients, are free from unwanted additives such as sucrose and corn syrup, and are made without the use ofGMOs, antibiotics, pesticides, chemicals, and preservatives.
The European Union has protective measures in place to ensure that baby formulas are safe and nutritionally complete. Many European formulas even contain some of the same nutrients that are present in breast milk, such as prebiotics and natural probiotic lactic acid cultures.
On top of quality concerns, there were also concerns over formula shortages in the US earlier this year as the largest infant formula manufacturer in the US had to temporarily close down. This pushed more parents to turn to European formula Brands to nourish their little ones, as well as prompted the FDA to enact more relaxed measures and flexibility around the importation of certain formula products.
Why Are Infant Formulas From Germany popular?
Formula from Germany is often made with organic ingredients and is meticulously monitored for quality control from the very beginning, with brands such as HiPP, Holle, Lebenswert, and Löwenzahn Organics emphasizing sustainable agriculture that benefits both babies and our planet.
Germany is home to some of the most innovative brands on the market, who strive to make nutrient-dense formulas that align with the most recent scientific findings regarding infant nutrition.
These standards are upheld by many tests and Organic Certification In Europe, each with their own product qualification process that involves quality assurance tests and product performance tests. These certifications determine how organic baby products are grown, processed, stored, shipped, and packaged.
Let's take a look at some of these certifications.
The European Commission has made the EU-wide label for organic baby formula and all other organic food mandatory in Europe since July 2010. This structure was made to provide consumers with trustworthy organic goods. This label differentiates organic food and non-organic food, with a set of strict standards that must be adhered to for a product to be considered organic.
For a product to become EU Organic Certified at least 95% of the agricultural ingredients must be organic, and the other 5% follow additional strict conditions set by the EU. An additional standard that set them apart from other countries is not allowing detectable levels of pesticide residues (no more than 0.01 mg per kg).
The EU Organic Certification strives to limit the environmental impact of farming practices. This includes using energy and natural resources responsibly, maintaining and conserving biodiversity, and preserving the quality of soil and water.
Bioland is an association dedicated to organic farming in Germany since 1971. Their standards are upheld by over 8000 producers of organic goods including farmers, gardeners, beekeepers, and winegrowers. On top of that, they have an extensive group with upwards of 1,400 processors who use these products in their bakeries, butchers, restaurants, and more.
Bioland's agricultural methods seek to develop sustainable practices that will have a positive impact for generations to come with their seven principles of agriculture for the future. These principles include promoting soil fertility, producing valuable foods, and promoting biological diversity just to name a few.
Demeter is one of the first organic associations in Germany and they continue to grow with over 19 Demeter organizations worldwide. They enforce regenerative biodynamic farming methods with a holistic approach that recognizes the connection between agricultural practices and our health. They adhere to strict standards and principles which include regenerated soil fertility, GMO-free agriculture, and respect for all animals.
Both Demeter and Bioland standards go above and beyond those set by the EU, as they work to abundantly produce high-quality organic goods for years to come.
The Latest Study On Organic Baby Formula
The Stiftung Warentest foundation was created with support from the German Parliament in December 1964 to provide objective advice and recommendations to consumers based on comparative testing.
Now in 2022, The Stiftung Warentest conducts more than 200 tests each year, covering products from all areas of life. They go through several steps to ensure the tests are non-biased and objectively evaluated.
This month, the latest winner of the Stiftung Warentest was announced, which aimed to determine the top first-stage infant formula based on nutritional quality, contaminants, packaging, microbiological quality, and other factors. The tests were conducted on some of the best German formula brands such as HiPP, Holle, Lowenzahn Organics, and more.
Each of these brands is changing the formula market as they continue to introduce innovative products known for their outstanding quality. Placing one formula above another does not diminish the quality of other contenders, it is simply used as a way to make objective recommendations to consumers. It is up to each parent to determine the best baby formula for their little one, based on factors such as lifestyle, the price tag of the product, and the baby's specific nutritional needs.
Best German Baby Formula 2022
This year's tests concluded that Löwenzahn Organics Stage Pre Infant Formula was the best formula. Löwenzahn Organics was praised for the nutritional quality of their formulas and their part in prioritizing environmental welfare.
An example of this quality is shown through their 1:1 ratio of DHA (omega-3 fatty acid) and ARA (omega-6 fatty acid), which surpasses the minimum amount required by the EU. They add prebiotic galactooligosaccharides (GOS) to their formulas, which is also present in breastmilk and works to improve gut health and digestion.
They were commended for their use of sustainable palm oil certified by the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO). Additionally, they source their Omega-3 (DHA) from algae which is a tastier and more sustainable option compared to fish oil.
Just like many of our other favourite baby formulas, Löwenzahn Organics formula products are made without the use of GMOs, antibiotics, pesticides, chemicals, artificial sweeteners, and preservatives.
We have raved about their products, but now let's dig deeper into who Löwenzahn Organics are as a brand.
Löwenzahn Organics was founded in Berlin by two women, Liz Sauer Williamson and Alice Mrongovius,who as mothers struggled to find a baby formula that met all of their needs. After having her first child Liz Sauer Williamson wanted to create products that would have a positive impact for generations to come. Alice Mrongovius hoped to give babies the best start to life, as having optimal nutrition in the early stages can have long-lasting positive effects on their health.
Knowing that breast milk is the best option for providing your little one with optimal nutrition, their goal was to create a formula that surpassed EU nutritional standards in organic quality and was backed by the most up-to-date scientific findings regarding infant nutrition.
Since the company was founded six years ago, it has quickly become one of the fastest-growing baby food companies in the DACH region, with a large list of German retailers and a growing online presence.
As mentioned above, the FDA has increased flexibility surrounding the importation of certain formula products, and Löwenzahn Organics is taking advantage of that. They are in the process of being reviewed by the FDA and are hoping that getting the green light will increase their sales, make products more widely available, and allow more parents to feel confident about the products that they are feeding to their babies.
Germany's Best Organic Baby Formulas
While Löwenzahn Organics gets a standing ovation this year for their organic baby formula, other contenders are deserving of recognition for their innovation and quality. These formulas are some of the best on the market and are loved by babies all over the world.
Hipp formula is packed full of all the vitamins and nutrients needed for a baby's development. With almost 100 years of experience, this family-run company has become one of the leading brands in Europe's organic baby food industry. Despite its growing success they continue to lead the way in ecological welfare on top of creating top-quality products.
Here are some of the qualities of HiPP that are worth celebrating:
Holle formula was founded in 1933 making them not only one of the first organic formula manufacturers in all of Europe, but also one of the first certified Demeter companies on the market. They have gone above and beyond with their efforts to prioritize environmental welfare by making all baby porridges, milk cereals and goat milk products CO2e neutral since 2016. Producing high-quality products while offsetting their carbon footprint is worth raving about.
Here are some of the qualities of HiPP that are worth celebrating.
Highest Organic Standards in Europe: Demeter
They prioritize Chemical & hormone-free agriculture and manufacturing
Made with Simple ingredients that support healthy development
Their products are free of GMOs, artificial colors and preservatives, aromas or flavor enhancers
Two-thirds of Holle’s packaging materials are glass and paper and many products are CO2e neutral.
Lebenswert Bio formula is Holle's sister company and was introduced to the European market in 2009. Their products are Bioland certified which is one of the strictest organic regulations in all of Europe. Despite its great quality Lebenswert Bio was made to offer parents a more cost-effective formula compared to other leading brands.
Here are some of the qualities of Lebenswert that are worth celebrating.
They only use untreated seeds when producing ingredients
Does not contain soy, gluten, or corn syrup
Milk is produced at Bioland-certified organic farms in Germany and Austria
They use chemical-free agricultural practices
Packed full of nutrients like vitamins A, D, and E, minerals, and essential fatty acids (DHA and ARA)
Made with simple ingredients that support development.
As you can see, there is something to love about all of these companies, they are pushing the European formula market to the next level, by setting new standards of nutrition and environmental preservation. Let us celebrate Löwenzahn Organics for their growing success and continue to support all of the wonderful formula companies that are keeping babies healthy and happy all over the world!
Please be aware that this information is based on general trends evidenced in babies, it is in no way medical advice. Your baby's doctor should be your first source of information and advice when considering any changes to your child’s formula, and when choosing your child’s formula. Always consult your pediatrician before making any decisions about your child’s diet or if you notice any changes in your child.
Disclaimer:Breastfeeding is the best nutrition for your baby, because breast milk provides your child with all the essential nutrients they need for growth and development. Please consult your pediatrician if your child requires supplemental feeding.