The launch will go ahead following a round of customer sampling and application testing, which is currently underway.
The ‘environmentally-conscious’ process uses a specific yeast strain to convert renewable carbon into vitamin A and has “the potential to transform the industry” and may even mobilise broader transition to more sustainable manufacturing, says DSM Vice President, Vitamins Category Management, Joerg von-Allmen.
“As a vocal climate action advocate and leader in this field, we expect this breakthrough to trigger all Vitamin A manufacturers worldwide to reconsider how they will invest to accelerate the transition to a healthier future for people and the planet away from the traditional chemical processes that are based on finite resources.”
According to DSM “there is an established and increasing consumer demand for high-performance, renewable cosmetic ingredients”, with vitamin A one of the most in-demand and trusted cosmetic ingredients on the market.
Vitamin A benefits immune and digestive health and is an effective anti-ageing compound widely used in treatment to reduce fine lines, wrinkles, blemishes, and increase collagen production.
The ‘nature-inspired’ technique indulges consumer demand but represents a “major leap forward” for DSM and its sustainability ambitions.
Ronald Gebhard, DSM’s VP Biosciences & Process Innovation, comments: “We realised we had something revolutionary at hand when we first isolated Vitamin A out of a bio-broth with a profile consistent to our existing process. Drawing upon the power of nature and our own scientific heritage, we are radically transforming how vitamins are made.”
Raw materials are commonly available and significantly reduce DSM’s carbon footprint and waste, without compromising product quality.
Von-Allmen maintains the process “offers an alternative with significant environmental advantages” and eliminates the need for investment in additional chemical facilities requiring finite resources.
“Until now, the only way to meet the growing demand for vitamin A has been to build new multi-step chemical production facilities requiring more finite resources. Going forward, we will increase our manufacturing capacity only through our bio-based process using renewable resources.”
The environmental benefits also extend to customers, giving them the opportunity to improve their own sustainability credentials while contributing to climate change actions and net zero goals.
So far, the response is “overwhelming positive”, according to VP Personal Care & Aroma, Parand Salmassinia, who comments: “We look forward to commercialising this innovation in the personal care industry starting next year.”
The bio-based product extends DSM’s existing nature-identical synthetic products to increase diversity in the market. The initial target market is the cosmetics industry but will expand to include other applications within human and animal health categories, with testing soon to get underway.
DSM’s cosmetics and personal care portfolio currently includes Beauplex VH (a blend of vitamin B ingredients, plus vitamin C and E) for skin, scalp, and hair care applications; D-Biotin for hair and nails; folic acid for premature aging; vitamin E for skincare, and Quali-A vitamin A products for food, beverage, and dietary supplement applications.