Nutrition & health innovation expert/consultant focused on the microalgae sector (BLU EAT). Background (PhD) in cellular and molecular biology, 20 years in the food and pharma industries and 7 years in the microalgae space. Founder of Probiotech and Microbiota (combined to become PROBIOTA in 2013 by Nutraingredients.com), the first ever international conferences in the fields of probiotics, prebiotics and microbiota.
Focusing on cost leads many buyers to miss out on new market opportunities that only multifunctional algal ingredients can open up.
For starters, what hashtags best define who you are and/or your ambitions in the microalgae space?
#nutrition #health #innovation #product #ingredients #international
What is your pitch/mission?
Expanding the use of microalgae in nutritional, healthy & wellness products (food and beverages) among all types of consumers.
Maybe a few words on how you got hooked on microalgae?
I first came across them more than seven years ago, when I helped a start-up market a microalgal extract during an international nutrition fair.
The doctor in microbiology in me became enthralled by this special and unusual plant world that provides more than half of the oxygen in the air we breathe… and I’ve stuck around ever since!
Any underreported recent news in the microalgae space that you wish to share?
In our industry, which is still very small, only very few announcements go unnoticed; it’s another story altogether with the general population. There remains a great deal to be done to educate the public to the benefits of microalgae and this initiative should help!
If you had one thing about microalgae that you could make better known by the general public, what would it be?
Mentioning how much oxygen microalgae release on a global scale (and how much carbon dioxide they take up) really catches the interest of people. I work extensively with Urban Algae, a company involved in urban algoculture systems, and I must say that this narrative is truly an excellent way of hooking an audience.
What do you believe is the most common (or interesting) misconception that business users or buyers have regarding microalgae?
I will talk about professional buyers in food and nutrition: they tend to focus only on cost when comparing multifunctional ingredients derived from microalgae and cheaper single-purpose ingredients derived from terrestrial plants. As a result, they miss out on new market
What do you believe is the future for microalgae?
A bright future lies ahead if, like a previously said, market players don’t limit discussions to the cost argument. It is important not to engage in that debate but rather to demonstrate that microalgae are capable of contributing many different functionalities, especially in applications such as animal feed: the use of raw microalgal biomass can help avoid using antibiotics whilst limiting costs and improving public perception.
Lastly, what kind of profiles would you be most willing to get in touch with?
Apply to the Awards in under 10 min!
Read more on how we make sure your intellectual property is perfectly protected, the various award categories and other terms and conditions at the link.