[New Zealand] An algae strain originally found in a Nelson bird bath is now a key ingredient in a new skin care range which claims to stop wrinkles.
Supreme Biotechnologieschief executive Tony Dowd said the unique strain of the algae (Haematococcus pluvialis) they grow produces astaxanthin – a chemical compound that increases cell nutrients.
“We induce the algae to get bigger and once it gets bigger it’s putting in a whole lot of lipids, that’s its energy source, so when it dries out that algae has to survive,” he said.
“What the algae does is it puts astaxanthin into these lipids. The protective force of the astaxanthin is essential to the life of this organism.”
Dowd said the skin care works by absorbing sun rays, leaving the skin less damaged.
He said the algae strain of the “nice, little green algae” had an unlikely beginning.
“We actually found a bird bath with this in it in Nelson and we’ve taken that strain and got it all cleaned up and then we grow that.”
Astaxanthin worked as an antioxidant and helps the body mend itself, specifically the skin.
“An easy way to describe it is that you’ve got a leaky home, when they fix a leaky home the first thing they do is put a shelter right over top of it. So nothing else can get in to damage it,” he said.
“Then all the builders and plumbers and the electricians all get in there and they fix it. That’s our body fixing our cells, so effectively the astaxanthin becomes that shelter that allows the body to fix itself.”
Once cultivated the algae is mixed with other ingredients to create the base product, be it a gel tablet, a moisturiser or a skin serum.
Sales and marketing manager Hilma Schieving said Supreme Biotechnologies have “really done their research” and is proud that they call Nelson home.
“I believe that it’s the only natural astaxanthin produced in New Zealand and it’s right here at Wakatu Estate.”
The skincare range, named Astas True Radiance, is new to the market but existing products from the company have been marketed globally.
“We’ve got distributors in Australia, Malaysia, Vietnam, Cambodia, the States, Norway, Germany, Greece and we have our own office in the UK,” Dowd said.
“We’re also in China and through the New Zealand trade enterprise we’re working with getting people in Taiwan and Thailand, the Philippines so probably more than 50 per cent of our product is going offshore now.”
Photo: Supreme Biotech CEO Tony Dowd produces Astaxanthin from a unique strain of cultured algae for their new product Astas.
View original article at: Nelson’s Supreme Biotechnologies turns bird bath algae into skincare range