A group of Marlborough investors and scientists have found the fruit of the vine can be good for business and your health in more ways than one.

stuff.co.nz reports that the team formed New Zealand Extracts two years ago to investigate turning what had been viewed as grape seed waste into a concentrated antioxidant product.

Typically fresh fruit and vegetables such as brussels sprouts and broccoli host a lot of antioxidants, important in fighting free radicals in the human body which can damage cells and lead to cancer. Research director Dr Glenn Vile said NZ Extracts had devised a unique way of producing antioxidant extracts from the seeds left over from the winemaking process. They could be then onsold to other companies to use in cosmetic, food and capsule products.

The extracts had been sold offshore, but as a start-up company NZ Extracts did not want to divulge revenues over the first 12 months, Vile said. A lot of research had been done into potential applications and to how to give the product a long shelf life.

“Grape seed extract is an existing product out in the (overseas) market and so we identified some interesting features from New Zealand grape seed,” Vile said.

Grape seeds had traditionally been a difficult and costly waste product to dispose of, having to be transported to landfills or processed into animal feed.

“There‘‘s about 20,000 to 30,000 tonnes of Marlborough grape waste so there‘‘s plenty of raw material,” he added.

NZ Extracts had developed an environmentally friendly water extraction method to separate high quality extract from the seeds. The extract product â?” marketed under the brand name Oxi-fend Vinanza â?” had been used in the recently launched Hubbard‘‘s Simply Bran cereal. In Wellington a skincare product company called Antipodes was using the grape extract in a cosmetics product.

Firms from the west coast of the United States and from France and Italy had developed health extracts from grape seeds, but they used high volume chemically based extraction.

Ano da Publicação:
WARMER BULLETIN ENEWS #42-2006-October 19, 2007
Kit Strange/Warmer Bulletin
Email do Autor: