Is perilla the new chia?

Valensa launches a portfolio of perilla-based ingredients in response to global chia shortage.

In response to consumer demand for plant-based omega-3s and the global shortage of chia seeds, Valensa International (Eustis, Fla.) announced that it has launched a new portfolio of formulations based on the alpha linolenic acid (ALA) omega-3 ingredient—supercritical CO2 Perilla seed extract. Perilla seed CO2 extract has the highest ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 fatty acids of any known seed oil—a remarkable 6:1—and typically 50 percent to 60 percent ALA content, which is twice that of chia seed extract.

The foundation products in the new lineup are Verilla™ Perilla Seed Extract and VerillaMax™ Perilla Seed Flour. Verilla Perilla Seed Extract is available as oil, in softgels, capsules and in gummy bear form. VerillaMax Perilla Seed Flour is a 40 percent protein, 40 percent fiber dry product aimed at functional foods and bars. Formulated products in the new lineup include Kerilla™ Perilla Seed Extract + Krill Oil, Zanthin® XP-3™ and Z-Omega™ 3-6-9, a Chia/Perilla oil blend that is superior in ALA content to conventional chia oil. Each of these products feature supercritical CO2 Perilla seed extract in conjunction with ingredients that complement or enhance the nutritional profile of the formulation.

According to Dr. Rudi E. Moerck, president and CEO of Valensa, the Perilla-based ingredient lineup has been developed as the “new chia” in response to growing interest in plant-based omega-3s. “In 2006, Valensa was the first company to champion supercritical CO2 chia seed extract as an important ingredient. Today, however, chia seeds are in short supply and rapidly increasing in cost. While we’re continuing to market chia-based products, we feel that the time is right for supplement and functional food marketers to take a fresh look at supercritical CO2 Perilla seed extract and Perilla extract blends for what they have to offer consumers,” he said. “New research continues to show the health benefits of alpha linoleic acid as a supplement to human diets. Not only is Perilla seed supercritical CO2 extract available right now, it is lower in cost and better from a nutritional standpoint than chia,” he added.


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