Extraction technology lies at the heart of Valensa’s work in creating materials for human nutrition and supplementation. Extraction of the constituents of natural materials offers some key benefits:
- Enhanced efficacy – Isolation of key components to allow higher dosage and targeted performance.
- Standardization – Natural materials tend to vary in makeup. Extraction makes them consistent.
- Convenience – Smaller dosages of high efficacy materials allow the consumer to more easily get the required levels of nutrients in a daily regimen.
- Safety – Extraction gives us more of what we want and less of what we don’t want. Extraction allows us to remove compounds that are not optimal for human health from natural materials.
More of What Nature Offers
Valensa’s core manufacturing process employs DeepExtract™ ultrahigh pressure carbon dioxide extraction technology that yields more of micronutrients contained in the natural botanical sourced materials.
DeepExtract supercritical CO2 extraction offers a number of exceptional advantages for the production of botanical extracts. First, it offers extremely high extraction efficiencies – delivering more of the higher molecular weight compounds that more closely track the natural source materials. Put another way, it delivers more of what nature offers. The process is flexible and allows for fractionation of the product and the delivery of very specific compounds out of the raw material.
From a product quality standpoint, DeepExtract offers gentle treatment of high value raw materials at temperature levels substantially below those used in expeller press and some chemical solvent extraction operations, in the absence of oxygen. This reduces the degradation of labile compounds, chemical change of components and the oxidation potential. In addition, the nature of the supercritical CO2 process offers virtual sterilization of the finish product and biomass. Both of these end products are untouched by chemical solvents and stay as ‘natural’ as they were before extraction. Supercritical extraction using CO2 provides another big advantage in that it offers the ability to fractionate the extracted components very selectively. Pressure is the main tool used to tailor the resulting fractionated products for product quality and efficient manufacturing purposes. Another important product quality issue is the complete absence of chemical residues.
For the consumer, DeepExtract products hit on a number of important trends. They can be marketed as all-natural and organic products. They are devoid of impurities and residues which can resonate with the safety concerns of consumers. Finally, they offer some of the highest efficacy profiles of any extracted products on the market. Supercritical CO2 delivers the high molecular weight compounds such as sterols, carotenoids and long chain alcohols that health studies point out as critical and that consumers want.
|Carotenoid||USPlus, High Pressure (060324SPCH)||Low Pressure (060822SPCL)|
|?-Carotene||8.6 mg/100g||2.3 mg/100g|
|Cryptoxanthin||0.359 mg/100g||0.334 mg/100g|
|Lutein||0.558 mg/100g||0.0565 mg/100g|
|Zeaxanthin||0.601 mg/100g||< 0.0200 mg/100g|
An interesting look at the impact of pressure on the use of supercritical CO2 products is seen in the comparison of low-pressure extracted saw palmetto and Valensa’s USPlus high pressure extraction of saw palmetto. In a visual comparison, it is easily noted that the USPlus high pressure extract is much darker in color. This is because more of the contents of saw palmetto are available in the final extract. As to what that ‘extra’ material might be, Table 2 shows an independent laboratory analysis of the two grades.
What becomes evident in comparing the two extraction approaches is that high pressure supercritical CO2 delivers higher levels of some very desirable compounds. This includes three times the beta carotene, ten times the amount of lutein and 30 times the zeaxanthin of a typical saw palmetto low-pressure extract. For this saw palmetto extract, the consumer is receiving more of what nature intended.
Generalizing this data to other botanicals, it becomes clear that there is a greater potential for delivering desirable compounds to consumers utilizing DeepExtract supercritical CO2 technology. DeepExtract is an environmentally friendly process and offers both worker safety and no disposal issues.