Marine oil innovator Epax is investing US$35 million over the next two years to increase its capacity and boost innovation in the Omega-3 sector. As part of the investment, the company will expand a Norwegian production facility and build a new one nearby.
The Norway-based company will expand capacity at its main production facility in Ålesund in Norway, allowing output to increase by more than 50% by 2021. Meanwhile, a new manufacturing facility nearby will provide raw materials for new and specialised marine ingredients.
The investment will also allow the implementation of technology to increase EPA and DHA concentration without triggering oxidation. The new distillation process will pave the way for gently processed products with concentration as high as 70% by weight (compared to the current industry standard of 50wt%).
The mild nature of the next generation distillation process makes it a highly effective way to increase EPA and DHA content without creating unwanted by-products such as trans-fatty acids and polymers.
Epax, which invented the technology to concentrate fish oil as an ethyl ester in 1987, has a 180-year history of innovation. Much of the new investment will be allocated to R&D, including clinical studies on the benefits of innovative new marine ingredients in dietary supplements.
Bjørn Refsum, CEO of Epax, said: "This substantial investment will create new possibilities for the marine ingredients sector in terms of concentration, purity and quality. We're particularly excited about our new distillation process, which we believe is the most effective and environmentally friendly way to achieve high levels of EPA and DHA without creating unwanted by-products and waste materials."
At this year's SupplySide West (17th-18th October in Las Vegas) the company will showcase products including:
- EPAX 0460 TGN and EPAX 1500 TGN: High-DHA products ideal for prenatal and postnatal health, children's health and healthy ageing
- EPAX 5025 TGN: A high Omega-3 product typically used in formulations targeting healthy inflammatory response and sports nutrition
All three products are certified sustainable and responsibly sourced by Friend of the Sea (FOS) and IFFO, the Marine Ingredients Organisation. They are also certified Halal.