Nutraceutical company Pharmactive Biotech Products has received organic certifications for its range of saffron-based formulations, Affron and AffronEYE, as well as for its black garlic extract, ABG10+. This designation – granted by the Committee of Ecological Agriculture of Madrid (CAEM) – allows the company to meet the burgeoning global consumer demand for naturally sourced botanicals. The company now aims to attain organic certification for its entire portfolio of botanicals.
“We have invested much effort into deploying the optimal production processes and controls, and in acquiring quality seals from relevant external regulators in order to earn the full confidence of our customers. This is with regards to the clean label attributes of our all-natural ingredients,” says Julia Diaz, Head of Marketing for Pharmactive.
For Alberto Espinel, Head of R&D for Pharmactive, the organic seal of approval is a confirmation of the integrity of the company’s saffron ingredients. “It reassures today’s informed consumers that our saffron brand can be trusted as purely sourced and wholly unadulterated,” he states.
The company harvests and processes its own home-grown saffron, and is present throughout the entire saffron production and preparation cycle to ensure full traceability. No pesticides or chemical substances are used, and the saffron is dried on-site immediately after harvest to ensure maximum stability of the bioactive compounds. The company uses a quality control department to run periodic analyses of its raw material to ensure its standards.
“Pharmactive is continually developing new manufacturing procedures to preserve the bioactives of the extracts, while being respectful of the environment,” adds Espinel. The company applies a proprietary low-temperature extraction technique that procures superior, highly concentrated saffron but with less industrial processing, less energy use and zero chemicals, thus significantly reducing the overall carbon footprint.
Affron Spanish saffron extract was also launched in the Asia-Pacific market last September. In the meantime, research on its saffron products continues to prove their benefits on health and wellness. AffronEYE saffron could help prevent the onset of glaucoma, one of the leading causes of irreversible blindness. These findings were a result of the company’s recent mice study, which found that the saffron extract’s antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties demonstrated an ability to protect retinal cells from damage and death, as well as reducing intraocular hypertension – a key aspect of glaucoma development.
Also included in the organic certification is Pharmactive’s black garlic extract, which targets both heart health and the culinary segment. The formulation is obtained from fresh garlic, which has been aged in a process to enhance its antioxidant properties, in particular S-allyl cysteine (SAC), a compound noted for its potent antioxidant and cardioprotective capabilities.
The organic space has been busy this week, with Arjuna also introducing a certified organic turmeric extract range. Dr. Benny Antony, Joint Managing Director of Arjuna Natural, told NutritionInsight that due to the current growing awareness on the usage of chemicals and the impact on human health, organic certifications across the supply chain are increasingly sought after.