Functional foods company Natraceutical has launched a new soluble cacao fibre which it hopes will generate EUR10m US$11.8m) in sales by 2011.

The Valencia-based company said the new product, which is already on the market,  should ring up sales of EUR1m next year. The product is the world's first non-cereal based soluble fibre, and it helps reduce cholesterol levels, Natraceutical said.

The fibre has a wide range of applications for the food industry, making its sales very promising, the company added.

A Natraceutical spokeswoman said the product has already attracted orders from food multinationals around the world.

The fibre is 100% natural and completely derived from cacao. Natraceutical, a unit of Spanish food group Natra-Cacao, makes a slew of functional ingredients for the food (mostly bakery) and drinks industry. It has launched an aggressive international expansion and is looking to make acquisitions in Europe and the US.