2010 has been a momentous year for the omega-3 market, with suppliers looking for new ways to provide sustainability, non-marine-sourced ingredients and global reach.

Several recent deals and product launches have altered the competitive landscape for PUFAs. In April, the chemical company DuPont launched a yeast-derived EPA ingredient called New Harvest (Martek is currently working on creating an algae-based EPA.) Fish oil ingredient supplier EPAX Holding AS was acquired by the krill oil company Aker BioMarine and the investment firm Lindsay Goldberg in September. Earlier this month, the world's biggest fish oil supplier Ocean Nutrition Canada inked a deal with Wilmar International, the largest seller of cooking oil in China.

This latest deal will help ensure that DSM can remain a top player in the global DHA and EPA market and compete in a landscape that now includes other large mainstream players such as DuPont and that increasingly favors non-marine-sourced PUFAs.

When asked about the timing of the Martek purchase, DSM’s Tanda said the company had been in discussions with Martek for a long time. “We don’t do these deals in weeks or even months,” he said. “In the end, you make a decision based on whether a transaction will create value, which we believe this one does—for both Martek shareholders and DSM.”