Going for the Gold

When you’ve already struck gold, as in Gold Standard 100% Whey, there’s only one thing left to keep digging for: more flavors. Which is why Optimum Nutrition recently held a contest in which consumers submitted their ideal flavors and subsequently voted salted caramel No. 1 over runners-up maple bacon and key lime pie. But even with its focus on pleasing customers’ palates, since its founding in 1986, the company has never lost sight of its commitment to using high-quality ingredients.

“We take our protein pretty much from the cow to the tub,” says Tim Weigard, Optimum Nutrition’s communications coordinator. “We won’t use subpar ingredients. In fact, we probably reject truckloads of the stuff every month because it doesn’t meet our high standards.”

Nor does Optimum Nutrition rest on its laurels, as it keeps bringing new products to the market. Like Maxx Carnitine, a refreshing fruit-flavored drink labeled under the company’s ABB Performance brand. A Vitamin Shoppe exclusive, this ready-to-drink has 3 grams of L-carnitine in an 8.5-ounce shot, plus 50 milligrams of green-coffee extract, including caffeine. 

And ON’s Essential Amino Energy is a versatile product that’s now easier to drink than ever and still provides an anytime boost of energy and amino acids to help support muscles and recovery. “With the original product, you can mix anywhere from two to six scoops into cold water and enjoy a variety of different flavors,” Weigard says. “But now it’s also available as a 16-ounce RTD in watermelon and orange flavors. If you don’t want to mix up powder and water, just reach into the cooler and grab one. It’s the same 5-gram amino blend with 100 milligrams of caffeine in it from green-coffee and green-tea extract.”

The Pro Series is another line that’s seeing some updates. Pro Complex was recently reformulated at the behest of consumers who didn’t want a vitamin-mineral blend in their protein supplement. “So we took that out and added hydrolyzed whey protein isolate to the whey protein isolate that was already the primary ingredient,” Weigard says. “Then we added in leucine peptides. In addition to the naturally occurring branched-chain amino acids and glutamine, we added some micronized amino acids so that the total comes to 14.5 grams of BCAAs per serving and 10.5 grams of glutamine, most of it from 60 grams of protein.” Weigard adds that this product is perfect for strength athletes who demand more of themselves and their sports nutrition. Also in this series are Pro Grainer — which will have line extensions coming out soon — and Pro BCAA, which has 5 grams of glutamine and 8 grams of BCAAs. 

Optimum Nutrition recently expanded to meet demand for its staple and new products with a new production facility that has resulted in a 50 percent increase in production capacity of the company’s powdered products. That’s a sure sign of even more good things to come.