Ingredient Snapshot: Allmicroalgae presents two new Chlorella vulgaris powders, which are approved as food ingredients and food supplements by EFSA.
The USP of the variants White and Yellow Chlorella vulgaris is their sensory profile. Compared to conventional, intensely green-colored products, these new offerings are more neutral visually and deliver a discrete taste profile, yet still promise the same unique nutritional value. As a natural plant-based source of protein containing all the essential amino acids, the powders are perfect for use in health-promoting foods, drinks and dietary supplements, meeting consumer demand for a protein punch that doesn’t contain ingredients of animal origin. Furthermore, detoxifying and antioxidant properties make them a sought-after ingredient for premium positionings in the health and wellbeing sector—for instance, for products supporting immune health. Due to the increasing demand for plant-based food solutions, for example, in bakery and confectionery, in ice creams, mayonnaises and snacks, Yellow Chlorella works well as an egg substitute, while White Chlorella can replace conventional dairy bases such as milk, increasing the protein content of the product. Both Chlorellas are effective texturizing and thickening agents. Yellow Chlorella can also be used as a natural food coloring agent. These products are available dried or as a paste, with variable protein functionality.
Allmicroalgae conducted comprehensive R&D activities in collaboration with a Portuguese university to achieve these versatile and unique Chlorella ingredients for use in a wide range of applications. Key to their improved sensory properties is the reduction of chlorophyll content, which can be achieved under heterotrophic fermentation of novel strains of Chlorella vulgaris.
“In light-colored end products in particular, the use of Chlorella vulgaris as an ingredient has been very limited. Nevertheless, there is positive interest from the food industry. We have therefore been driven by a determination to make microalgae available to all consumers. Our yellow and white microalgae variants deliver the full functional package of proteins, fibre and other valuable nutrients, while also promising environmental and sustainability benefits. Thanks to our tireless efforts in R&D, we are happy to have achieved this major breakthrough. Now we are a step further in our plan to expand the application scope of microalgae in foods and supplements—and therefore contribute to future-proof nutrition,” says Joana Laranjeira da Silva, Plant Manager at Allmicroalgae.
As well as providing 35-40 per cent protein content, Yellow and White Chlorella vulgaris also contain impressive amounts (over 20 per cent) of dietary fiber. Furthermore, they are a valuable source of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs), namely the Omega 3, 6 and 9 fatty acids, and contain a vast array of minerals and vitamins too, i.e. vitamins from the B-complex, such as vitamin B2 and B12, as well as zinc and phosphorus.
Thanks to their nutritional composition, desirable health claims (EU) are also possible. They include the maintenance of blood cholesterol levels, normal vision and bone health, as well as reduction of tiredness, cell protection and immune system support. Such claims allow for product positionings in the general health and well-being sectors, cognitive and heart health categories, and also energy and sports supplement segments.
These novel Chlorella launches, based on 100 percent microalgae, represent the perfect ingredient for contemporary product developments, such as vegan and vegetarian formulations. They can even be used beyond the vegan market, and across wider food segments. White and Yellow Chlorella are certified as non-GMO, and are free from soy, gluten, lactose, sugar, nuts and additives. Their production process is irradiation-free, and the ingredients do not contain pesticides, perchlorates and pathogenic flora such as Bacillus cereus.