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NAXA Membership Gains and Losses, New Claims for Astaxanthin

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Current and former members of the Natural Algae Astaxanthin Association (NAXA) have been making moves in and out of the association, as well as alerting FDA to new structure/function marketing claims.

NAXA announced the addition of its newest member Yunnan Alphy Biotech Company Ltd. Alphy Biotech, which has been producing natural astaxanthin derived from Haematococcus pluvialis since 2007 in the Yunnan province of China.

“Alphy Biotech is an important contributor to the natural algae astaxanthin market and their engagement in NAXA underscores their commitment to the ingredient’s success," said Scott Steinford, NAXA President.

As Alphy Biotech joined, AstaReal amicably withdrawal from NAXA. Joe Kuncewitch, national sales manager for AstaReal cited the differences in the cultivation technology, quality standards and research capabilities of NAXA member companies.

AstaReal was a founding member of NAXA, which was established in January 2014 to educate consumers and industry about the important differences between natural astaxanthin sourced from algae and the synthetic form.

“We are extremely proud of the seminal work we have done with NAXA," said Kazuyuki Miyakawa, Chief Scientific Advisor at AstaReal. “Especially during the first year of its existence, NAXA presented an extremely valuable message to the public about the many concerns and unanswered questions about using synthetic astaxanthin in human nutritional supplements."

NAXA amicably and regrettably accepted the resignation AstaReal, according to a NAXA press release. “AstaReal played a role in founding NAXA, and we support their focus on the education of the important differences between natural and synthetic astaxanthin," said Ed Hofland, NAXA chairman of the board.

NAXA also noted it has begun testing retail products at independent laboratories to ensure the reliability of natural astaxanthin products on the market. NAXA is further supporting this effort through the launch of the NAXA Verification Program currently being rolled out to its members and their customers.

 In other astaxanthin news, Algae Life Sciences Inc., a subsidiary of BGG, announced that U.S. FDA has been notified of 239 structure/function claims for astaxanthin. Algae Life Sciences' natural astaxanthin, AstaZine ,is extracted from certified organic Haematococcus pluvialis microalgae and produced in a glass tube photobioreactor (PBR) closed system.

 “Astaxanthin has been validated in approximately 500 different medical research studies to positively affect eye and brain health, improve skin appearance and quality, support joints and tendons, promote cardiovascular health, and provide various benefits for athletes & active people," said Lixin Ding, Ph.D., chief operating officer, Algae Life Sciences. 

A few of the structure/function claims used for astaxanthin include:

  • Helps maintain beautiful, younger looking skin,
  • The ultimate nutrient to support the eyes and brain,
  • Nutritional support in the battle against aging,
  • Promotes improved performance levels in athletes,
  • Promotes healthy joints, tendons and synovial fluids,
  • Helps support cardiovascular function and a healthy circulatory system,
  • Supports energy production in the cell’s power plant—the mitochondria, and
  • The ultimate weapon to fight oxidation in our bodies.
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