Being able to concentrate the algae that makes Astaxanthin is a potential game-changer according to Andrew Greene, president of GS bioE, which specializes in wholesale commercial algae production industry
"We are very pleased with the successful results of our recent trial of OriginOil's Algae Appliance,” he says.
“By deploying the OriginOil Algae Appliance, we were able to harvest the algae to a 5 percent solids concentration while keeping the algae cells viable. We were then able to stress them successfully into an Astaxanthin-bearing product.”
Priced at about $4,000 dollars a kilogram, Astaxanthin is produced by stressing a green algae into producing a red-tinted shell that contains the high-value product which is then used for its anti-oxidative qualities in cosmetics, pharmaceuticals and nutraceuticals.
The challenge is to grow this algae despite "crashes" caused by bacteria and other factors, and then to concentrate it without losing its ability to produce the Astaxanthin-bearing shell.
The research firm Oilgae forecasts Astaxanthin sales of nearly $2 billion by 2020, driven by market demand.
Greene concludes, "We are satisfied with the performance of the Algae Appliance. Together with its ability to reduce bacteria, we expect its proven harvesting capability to give us a competitive edge in the production of natural Astaxanthin as we plan to make it a key component of our state-of-the-art Astaxanthin production system."
GS bioE recently concluded its testing of the OriginOil Model 4 Algae Appliance. The companies are now in discussion regarding GS bioE's 2013 commercialization plans and the potential for expanded use of OriginOil technology.
"By slashing bacterial counts [with the technology], we can help Astaxanthin grow better with fewer crashes, and make the water reusable,” says Jose Sanchez, general manager of OriginOil's Algae Division
“And by successfully concentrating Hematococcus pluvialis as we have shown, we think we could increase the Astaxanthin concentration [which] is extremely promising, and we look forward to helping Garden State bioEnterprises enable the rapid expansion of Astaxanthin production worldwide."