Zero-waste future for nutraceuticals

DolCas Biotech commits to sourcing clean-label nutraceuticals from upcycled raw materials.


DolCas Biotech has shared its zero-waste goal for its entire portfolio of potent branded nutraceutical ingredients. The company declared its commitment to accelerate a full-sustainability strategy centred on the upcycling of typically discarded – yet valuable – raw materials. DolCas will further ally this endeavour with its ongoing clean-label initiatives to maintain full transparency and traceability of its product line.

According to Euromonitor International’s Sustainability Survey 2019 study, 66% of nutraceutical industry professionals believe that sustainability initiatives are critical to success. Another Innova Market Insights’ consumer research further indicated that consumer expectations around sustainability are higher than ever, pushing companies to prioritise eco-efficiency, especially when it comes to reducing food and plastic waste.

While the market for clean-label products has grown substantially in recent years, DolCas offers a perspective that focuses on clinically-studies, sustainably-sourced, “drum-to-hopper” ingredients that are clean-label by design. As early adopters, DolCas understands the nuances of formulating for this demand, and continually seeks to collaborate with partners that source their ingredients locally, and with commitment to the same environmental vision.

Upcycling creates potent new products
DolCas’ TruOliv polyphenol extracts is an example of such next-gen sustainability in action. The formulation is composed of Moroccan-grown olive leaves and whole fruit, including the skin and flesh. The olive pomace, or remaining mass of pits, branches, and unused fruits, has been upcycled into smoke-free, natural charcoal briquettes for a completely zero-waste process. The solvent-free, USDA, EU and China-certified organic extract and its charcoal byproduct are parts of a vertically integrated operation that is regenerative, not just sustainable.

Dr Shavon Jackson-Michel, director of medical and scientific affairs for DolCas, explained: “The polyphenol profile is a perfect example of this. The sun scorched, hostile desert environment is an incubator for the accelerated production of polyphenols, which is key in generating TruOliv’s concentrated actives profile.”

DolCas’ extraction method is said to deliver more than 3& of hydroxytyrosol and 7% oleuropein, without the use of solvents or heat. It provides the polyphenol synergism of traditionally consumed olive oils, yielding a high concentration of clinical bio-actives equal to 20 tablespoons of extra virgin oil, all in a 1g dose.

K. G. Rao, president of DolCas, elaborated: “As with many trends that develop from shared agendas, the uncompromising interest in sustainability and health-awareness is expected to energise the growth trajectory for clean-label products. The nutraceuticals industry faces the challenge of delivering clinically efficacious end products that merge nutrition with pharmaceutical precision, with concessions for environmentally unfriendly processes or synthetic ingredients.”

The company’s Bergacyn liver support complex is made with adherence to the same values. It is a clean-label nutraceutical powerhouse composition of bergamot fruit polyphenols, fibre, and wild-crafted artichoke thistle leaf. Bergamot juice and pulp serve as upcycled source materials to provide the polyphenols and fibre in Bergacyn.

“The peel of the bergamot fruit has traditionally been prized for the extract of its essential oil for use in the perfume industry,” Jackson-Michel added. “The fruit itself – pulp and juice included – were considered nothing more than waste. In fact, it’s been reported that it takes roughly 100 bergamot fruits to produce a mere three ounces of essential oil. This constitutes substantial loss. Moreover, the rich polyphenols in bergamot, if not properly discarded, can lead to soil contamination.”

The antichoke component of the Bergacyn blend is an ancient variety, endemic to the Calabria region in Italy, where it often is seen growing along the roadside as a weed and largely regarded as not commercially viable. An innovative extraction process is applied to these native botanicals, resulting in a solvent-free, richly potent, clinically studies bioactive compound with multi-targeted use. Bergacyn production reinvests these underutilised, yet valuable, cast-offs, delivering a clean-label fill for capsules.

MoriKol collagen is another DolCas nutraceutical sustainably sourced, derived from otherwise discarded fish remnants. Fish collagen is said to have bioavailability benefits that surpass those of bovine collagen. MoriKol takes it a step further by delivering 15% of tripeptides – the skin-cell ready actives – that are more efficiently absorbed. They not only support the building of collagen by stimulating its growth, but also protects the skin from UV-damage at a low dose.

Curcugen is DolCas’ 50% concentrated full spectrum bioavailable curcuminoid ingredient that conforms to both zero-waste and eco-friendly initiatives. The sustainably sourced, agro-fueled manufacturing process generates a clean, food-grade byproduct that is upcycled into a base ingredient for culinary use.

“During our 13 years of business, we recognised that when we honour the values of quality, purity and sustainability, positioning our products become easier because we know with assurance that we aren’t shortchanging the most important person in this chain – the consumer,” Jackson-Michel concluded.