Algenuity's new patent-pending Chlorella Colours platform hopes to satisfy the needs of the growing vegan sector, offering protein-rich, whole plant cell-based ingredients, which are sustainable, natural, gluten free and non-GM.
Launching the platform at Vitafoods Europe recently Andrew Spicer, chief executive and director at Algenuity, told NutraIngredients that adding Chlorella to food and drink can be challenging because of the strong colour, taste and smell associated with its high chlorophyll content.
“The dark green colour is a drawback and the smell and taste are also off putting.
“But we have developed strains containing almost no chlorophyll and instead, retain varying levels of natural pigments, such as lutein and other carotenoids to create yellow, white and lime strains with very little scent but with all the health benefits.
“It has superfood status, high protein, it is vegan and sustainable so it ticks all the boxes.”
The firm is now working on additional colours to add to the range, with red being a certain possibility.
Approved for the European food market, the strains are based on Chlorella vulgaris derived from Algenuity’s own proprietary microalgal ingredient.
Spicer adds that these alternatives are also highly productive under heterotrophic growth, overcoming the economic and operational challenges of producing phototrophic microalgae at scale, supporting its use in the food market, and opening up a wealth of additional applications.
The firm also claims that ‘improved organoleptic properties’ make it perfect as an ingredient in food, drink and supplement products.
Ticking the ‘gut health’ box
Wanting to tick even more boxes, the firm is also working to prove what beneficial influence these strains can have on the microbiome.
“People are massively aware of how the food they eat affects their microbiome and w want to be able to see exactly why chlorella is good for us.
“We want to be able to show it has a direct impact on gut health.”
Algenuity is a UK based algae technology development and licensing company with expertise in algal biotechnology.
It develops proprietary and integrated solutions that satisfy commercial needs, increase algal strain productivity and performance, reduce time to market for algal bioproducts, and boost overall profitability.
These enabling technologies include the Chlorella Colours platform, the Algem labscale photobioreactor family of products, non-GM directed evolution technology, GM strain engineering, and novel bioprocess development and optimisation tools.