Chinova Bioworks self-affirms GRAS for natural chitosan preservative

By Stephen Daniells

- Last updated on GMT

© Getty Images / Zakharova_Natalia
© Getty Images / Zakharova_Natalia
An independent expert panel recently affirmed the GRAS status of New Brunswick-based Chinova Bioworks' mushroom-derived chitosan for use in food and beverages. The company is now working in parallel to file with the US FDA.

As reported previously by FoodNavigator-USA​, Chinova secured financing led by DSM Venturing and Rhapsody Venture Partners to accelerate development of its clean label mushroom-based natural preservative for food and beverages.

The seed funding round, which also included AgFunder and Natural Products Canada, will help the company build its team, scale up production and manufacturing, and accelerate the commercialization of the product into the market.

Chitosan (pronounced kito-san) can be extracted from shellfish, but the demand in the market is for non-animal based ingredients, and extracting from shellfish could also create allergen issues. By focusing on mushrooms, the company’s proprietary technology can ensure consistent and effective anti-microbials for the food and beverage industries.

Chinova’s reportedly has the molecular characteristics to be at least as effective as traditional synthetic preservatives, while maintaining its status as a completely natural product.

The GRAS affirmation is an important milestone, said Natasha Dhayagude, CEO of Chinova Bioworks.

“Having our Chiber mushroom chitosan ingredient recognized as GRAS allows us commercialize our natural solution in the U.S. market for the first time,”​ she said.

“This is an important milestone for us, and an exciting development for our customers who are eager to replace artificial preservatives and make their foods and beverages healthy and clean label.”       

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