The company’s True Pomegranate line currently includes a pomegranate extract and a pomegranate seed oil, with more products currently under development.
Stiebs’ Nutraceuticals business development manager Stefan Wypyszyk said the firm obtains all its pomegranate fruits from Californian growers, and ensures that the ingredients in the True line retain the same natural ratio of polyphenols as in the fruit.
Pomegranate, a rich source of antioxidants, has been linked to improved heart health, and a growing body of science also indicates the fruit protects against prostate cancer. Studies have also reported a role in joint health by slowing cartilage loss in arthritis.
It is the antioxidants, and particularly ellagitannin compounds like punicalagins and punicalins, which account for about half of the fruit's antioxidant ability, that are reportedly behind the proposed health benefits.
Stiebs, which started in 2005 as a pomegranate concentrate manufacturer, uses a proprietary water extraction process to obtain its pomegranate extract ingredient.
This, explained Wypyszyk, delivers an ingredient standardized to 50 percent polyphenols, with 5 percent punicalagins A+B and 2 percent ellagic acid.
The water soluble antioxidant powder is marketed for use in supplements, foods, drinks and cosmetic products.
At a recommended oral dosage of up to 1,000mg per day, the ingredient is marketed in foods for its antioxidant and heart health properties.
Pomegranate seed oil
Stiebs’ True Pomegranate oil is obtained by drying the pomegranate seeds and cold pressing the oil.
It is particularly marketed for use in certain food products, such as bars or chews, and in cosmetic moisturizer products. In moisturizers, Wypyszyk said the ingredient can be used for its antioxidant properties, but also as a natural SPF protection and to help increase skin’s elasticity.
In foods, the company is particularly focusing on the women’s health benefits of the ingredient, specifically targeting pre- and post-menopausal symptoms.
The seed oil contains 60 percent punicic acid, has a characteristic nutty odor and a golden yellow color. The recommended daily intake is 1,000 – 5,000mg per day orally, and 0.1 – 100 percent w/w topical.
Stiebs introduced its new line of pomegranate ingredients to some customers at IFT earlier this year, but said its hard launch will be at Supply Side West.
The company said its next goal is to “initiate some human clinical trials for some specific health applications”, but could not give further details due to confidentiality agreements with contracted partners.