PetroAlgae’s Protein Achieves Successful Test Results for Human Consumption
(PetroAlgae) University Studies Underscore Potential to be New, Large-Scale Protein Source
PetroAlgae Inc., a global provider of licensed technology that produces micro-crops for renewable protein, feed, and fuel products announced today the completion of the first phases of two studies showing that PetroAlgae micro-crop protein could qualify as the first major new plant protein source for humans since soy protein entered the human diet in the 1950s.
PetroAlgae’s patent pending technology employs a hydroponic system using indigenous aquatic plants and is designed to enable its licensees to produce high-value protein, animal feed and a cost-effective alternative to fossil fuels, while absorbing carbon dioxide. Unlike most soy products, PetroAlgae protein is not produced from genetically modified (GMO) species; it is derived from renewable aquatic crops using no pesticides or heavy metals that would otherwise contaminate the products with residues. Moreover, by using a local, non-GMO species, the PetroAlgae licensed technology preserves the ecological integrity of the areas that are farmed, and it does not pollute soil or water.
The studies were performed at the College of Agriculture at Purdue University, under the direction of Dr. Mario Ferruzzi; by Dr. Fadi Aramouni of the College of Animal Sciences and Industry at Kansas State University; and by independent laboratories such as Craft Technologies, Inc.
Researchers at Purdue found that PetroAlgae protein is rich in carotenoids, chlorophyll, antioxidents and other organic compounds of nutritional value. The PetroAlgae protein contains high concentrations of lutein, a pigment which has demonstrated benefits for human eye, skin, and cardiovascular health, as well as women’s health, as described by the Lutein Information Bureau. It also exhibited promising polyphenol levels that have been shown to have beneficial antioxidant effects that help prevent various diseases such as cardiovascular disease, cancers, and inflammation. These nutrients are normally obtained in the diet only through the consumption of fruits and green vegetables.
In a separate series of tests, Craft Technologies, Inc., a leading testing laboratory that specializes in food and nutrient testing, assessed significant levels of Vitamins C, E, D and K in PetroAlgae’s Protein Concentrate. PetroAlgae protein was found to contain healthy levels of these vitamins, especially vitamins K1 and K2 in the form of menaquinone-7. Recent studies have shown exceptional benefits for cardiovascular and bone health from consumption of menaquinone-7, and the analyses show that PetroAlgae protein could be a new potential source of these vitamins to meet recommended daily allowances. In addition, the vitamin E tested by Craft was found to contain high levels of alpha tocopherol, the strongest and best form of vitamin E that is preferentially absorbed and accumulated in humans.
The aim of Dr. Aramouni’s investigation at Kansas State University was to examine the use of PetroAlgae’s protein in high volume foods such as noodle s, tortillas, crackers, and smoothies. Their results indicated that PetroAlgae’s protein could be used for food fortification without having to change the way people prepare and eat food. As well, it could also address a valuable market for completely gluten free baked goods and pastas, according to the study.
“It is really exciting to work with a quickly renewable source of protein,” said Dr. Aramouni. “The implications for protein depleted areas of the globe could be significant.”
PetroAlgae protein also has other advantages. For example, earlier testing by Trilogy Analytical Laboratory in Washington, MO showed it is free of mycotoxins that are a common problem in soy and other grains. Moreover, aquatic farms utilizing PetroAlgae’s hydroponic technology grow these new sources of protein locally using crops that are not genetically modified and are resistant to local diseases. PetroAlgae licensed technology has the capacity to produce ten times more protein per hectare than soy. This means the local production advantages of PetroAlgae’s technology and the continuous, year-round nature of its production process can create supply chain advantages for markets in Asia, Africa, and South America, all of which have a growing dependence on imported protein sources. It is also expected to be halal compliant and suitable for other special diets.
The combination of valuable specialized plant nutrients and highly concentrated protein in a single ingredient could simplify the fortification of basic foods. PetroAlgae protein, for example, might be used as an ingredient in prepared foods in developed countries, as well as a fortification ingredient for malnourished populations, addressing several very large human food market segments worldwide.
“We are very excited with the findings of these studies, which point to PetroAlgae protein as a new food ingredient that can help combat world hunger and malnutrition,” said Anthony Tiarks, CEO of PetroAlgae. “This confirmation of our product value is a key step in accelerating our commercialization to a variety of new markets, providing high value to both our licensees and PetroAlgae. Because PetroAlgae licensed technology does not require arable farmland, it can also provide a longer-term supply solution to the problem of fewer farm acres being devoted to protein crops around the world. PetroAlgae’s technology also provides a solution that is not tainted by synthetic pesticides, their residues or other toxic poisons.” READ MORE