What Are the Benefits of Phycocyanin?

Apr. 24, 2022

The rise of "clean labels" is driving the rapid growth of natural colors as consumers increasingly seek to go back to nature. According to Markets and Markets, the global natural food coloring market is expected to reach $3.88 billion in 2018 and grow at a CAGR of 5.7% to $5.12 billion by 2023.

Natural food colors offer more options for food processors than synthetic food colors, and many artificial color suppliers are turning to natural colors for their growth plans. Currently, in addition to the rapidly growing demand for natural red and natural yellow pigments, algae blue has an irreplaceable position and huge market volume as a natural blue pigment.



Phycocyanin is a natural water-soluble pigment protein extracted from Spirulina and is one of the rare pigment proteins in nature. It is not only brightly colored but also a nutritious protein. It has a complete amino acid composition, accounting for 37.2% of the total, and can be used as a natural food coloring agent, functional food material, and cosmetic additive. Phycocyanin is used as a food colorant and cosmetic additive because of its pure and clear blue color. It is non-toxic, has high antioxidant properties, improves immunity, and prevents cancer. Due to these functions, phycocyanin can be used in food supplements and health foods.

Spirulina is classified as cyanobacteria or blue-green algae. This means that they have both green pigments from chlorophyll and blue pigments from phycobiliproteins (and actually orange pigments from carotenoids).

One of these bile proteins is the blue pigment phycocyanin, which is often called "blue spirulina", even though it is only a component of spirulina - the molecule that gives spirulina its blue color.



The natural coloring of food

As a pure natural pigment, phycocyanin has been widely used in food and cosmetics in Europe, America, and Japan since the beginning of the 21st century.

Phycocyanin is a natural blue pigment approved by FDA in the US. It is also classified as a colored food ingredient in the EU.

Algocyanin is used as a food coloring in bubble gum, dairy products, lipstick, and eye shadow in Japan, China, and Thailand. Due to its fluorescent and antioxidant properties, algin is the most widely used blue pigment in food and biotechnology.

In addition to its function as a natural pigment, phycocyanin can also be used as a high-quality ingredient in functional foods.

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In the field of medicine, health care, and food

Research has proven that alginocyanin can scavenge free radicals. As a natural antioxidant, it can help scavenge cell damage, aging, and inflammatory responses caused by harmful free radicals in the body.

In addition, due to the fluorescence property of cyanobacteria, its fluorescence effect is 30 times higher than that of ordinary fluorescein, which can be used as a photosensitizer in biology and cytology and other photodynamics.

Also as a photosensitive protein, it can significantly promote photosynthesis in plants, while being stimulated by light and producing photosensitive reactions, making the product antiviral and antibacterial.

Cosmetic field

Phycocyanin is a type of collagen with whitening, moisturizing, anti-allergic, and spot-removing effects.

For more information about the advantages of phycocyanin, welcome to contact us today or request a quote. 

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