So far we’ve seen that collagen can be harnessed through a variety of animal-derived products, however, these forms are not suitable for all consumers.
In today’s world, consumers are more conscious of what they are putting into their bodies than ever before. We’re also more aware of allergies, intolerances, and overall dietary requirements.
And this is one area that can be difficult for producers of collagen products. Let’s take a look at a couple of examples.
Followers of religions that forbid the consumption of animal products are restricted in the types of collagen products they can consume. Collagen is often derived from the bones, hooves, and skins of animals, meaning many consumers are looking for alternatives.
Muslim communities around the world strictly steer clear of pork products and therefore prefer to consume collagen that comes from halal-certified bovine sources or marine collagen. This is important information for brands looking to expand their collagen products overseas, as pork-based collagen will not be accepted in Muslim countries, including the Middle East.
Similar considerations should be made for the Jewish and Hindu communities where marine, poultry, or plant-based collagens may prove more widely accepted.
Then there are the vegetarian and vegan communities. Now, you might be surprised to hear that there is such a thing as vegan-friendly collagen, however, it’s not as easy to get hold of due to the process needed to create it.
In fact, vegan collagen has to be made in a lab, taking human genes and adding them to the genetic structure of yeast or bacteria. The process takes time and therefore hasn’t reached mainstream use in the health or cosmetic industries.
For this reason, the vegan-friendly supplements you’ll see on shelves are actually collagen-promoting in nature, meaning they help to stimulate the natural production of collagen by providing the nutrients your body needs.
This natural process can also be supported by eating tempeh, tofu, beans, seeds and nuts, which are high in amino acids, all of which are typical elements of a vegan diet.
We predict that there will be an increased demand for plant-based collagen in the coming years as more consumers shift to this lifestyle. This provides a huge opportunity for brands to enter this space in the market through innovative new processes and ingredients.