Consumer Staples

Green & Clean Technologies For Novel Nutraceuticals

<p>Bioactive compounds such as Nutraceuticals are extracted from natural sources and they play a major role in improving human health by acting as antimicrobial, antifungal, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and other health promoting actions. Natural sources like plants, food by-products, algae, micro-algae, are the basic raw materials. Extraction processes for these compounds depend on several factors such as the technique that is used, the raw material, and the organic solvent.</p><p>Conventional techniques generally require large amounts of utilities like solvents and energy as well they are time consuming, which has generated interest in new technologies that are sustainable referred to as clean or green technologies. These can reduce or eliminate the use of toxic solvents, and thus preserve the natural environment and its resources.</p><p>Utilization of green technologies for the extraction of bioactive compounds have several advantages such as reduction of the processing time, energy consumption, and the uses of harmful and expensive solvents and increase in the extraction yields.</p><p>The extraction efficiency of conventional methods such as Soxhlet, Maceration, Percolation, and Hydrodistillation mainly depends on the choice of solvents and major challenges of conventional extraction are longer extraction time, the requirement of costly and high purity solvent, evaporation of the huge amount of solvent, low extraction selectivity, and thermal decomposition of thermo-labile compounds. To overcome these limitations of conventional extraction methods, by developing green technologies, several innovative and promising approaches such as ultrasound, pulsed electric field, voltage electrical discharges, microwave, pressurized hot water extraction, subcritical water extraction, supercritical fluid extraction, and enzyme-assisted extraction for extraction of bioactive compounds were industrially studied and utilized in the world.</p><p>Nutraceutical and nutritional industries can play an important role in achieving the objective of carbon footprint reduction by adopting technology which is environment friendly using green solvents in separation and extraction processes, referred to as green technology. Green solvents and sustainable technologies are integrated into the extraction and separation of large numbers of bioactive products from biomass conversion. The ever-increasing demand of nutraceuticals as a need for healthy lifestyle indicates importance for industries to use safe and appropriate techniques for extraction of bioactive from nature.</p><p>Technologies that are being acquired in Nutraceutical extraction namely, supercritical fluid extraction (SCFE), pressurized liquid extraction (PLE), microwave-assisted extraction (MAE), ultrasound extraction (UAE) and pulsed electric fields extraction (PEFE) can be termed as green &amp; clean concepts of product recovery from raw materials on industrial scale, with minimal energy consumption and chemical use.</p><p>Several bioactive compounds are extracted from different plants using Pressurized Liquid Extraction which is an alternative method used for its benefit of short time operation extraction (&lt;30 min), inert environment under high pressure (&lt;20 MPa) and temperatures (25&ndash;200 ◦C) and low solvent consumption.</p><p>Amongst all, Supercritical fluid extraction (SFE) technology is a popular one which is a green technology that offers an alternative to conventional solvent extraction technology. Having less impact on the environment; it also meets consumer demand for safe, natural and high-quality ingredients. More and more industries are using SFE technology and are reported to have market advantage.</p><p>SFE can also be used to remove undesirable compounds such as organic pollutants, toxins, and pesticides. Selection of supercritical fluid is very important for the development of a SFE process, and a wide range of compounds can be used as solvents in this technique. However, despite the fact that there are many compounds that can be used as SFs (ethylene, methane, nitrogen, xenon, or fluorocarbons), most separation systems use carbon dioxide due to its safety and low cost. Carbon dioxide (CO2) has been described to ensure minimal alteration of the bioactive compounds and to preserve their curative or functional properties.</p><p>SFE can play a critical role in the nutraceutical and functional food industries because of its ability to extract product without solvent residue, high purity and no degradation of active compounds. There have been extensive scientific studies reported on the extraction of different bioactive compounds, such as nutritional lipids, vitamins, carotenoids, polyphenols, natural colours, etc., which were extracted from different parts of the plant.</p><p>&nbsp;</p>
KR Expert - Pankaj Nemade