Beraca cracks year-round supply of natural ingredients

Related tags Cosmetics

Ensuring a constant supply of seasonal natural ingredients is one
of the most challenging aspects for businesses within this
category. Simon Pitman reports on how Brazilian rain forest
ingredients specialist Beraca Ingredients has used specific
packaging and processing methods to overcome this problem.

According to the company, the essentials for ensuring the supply of seasonal ingredients are down to both logistics and employing accurate methods to avoid the deterioration and degradation of ingredients while they are in storage, including microencapsulated the oils in powder form and specially designed packaging.

Beraca's​ vegetable oils in its Rain Forest Specialties line of Beraca, formed by the oils are formed from buriti, urucum, andiroba, Para chestnut (Brazil nut), copaiba, and passion fruit; and the butters of cupuaçu, ucuuba and muru-muru.

But because each of these oils originates from the Amazonian forest, the seed crops are harvested when they are ripe. This means that as they are seasonal products, each one has its own specific harvesting times and conditions, the company says.

"To avoid the deterioration and the degradation of the seed oils, the harvesting and the storage of the seeds obey strict technical norms,"​ Filipe Sabará, Beraca Ingredient's marketing director, told​. "In addition, the promptness of product availability during the whole year is guaranteed for the user by all logistics operation involved in the production process of those raw materials."

Beraca's butters and oils of Rain Forest Specialties line are processed at the factory of Belem do Para, in the Northern Brazil state of Para, and then finished at its refining unit in Santa Barbara D'Oeste, in the state of Sao Paulo, in the south. Beraca says that both factories are FSC - Forest Stewardship Council certified, and that it is in the process of obtaining Good Manufacturing Practices certification. The current production capacity is 600 tons/month and the production process is said to be completely traceable.

The raw materials, which are cold-pressed, are physically- and vacuum-refined according to international quality standardization. Further to this, Beraca says it maintains the quality and the regularity of active ingredients contents, batch by batch to ensure there is no irregularities.

Many of Beraca's raw materials are backed up by international patents, which include the production technologies for powdered oils - constituted by the microencapsulation of the oils for protection against the oxidation processes. This allows for the easier formulation of oils and butters into cosmetic preparations, as well as ensuring the quality and efficacy of the ingredient.

Currently rain forest oils available in powder form include Andiroba, Brasil Nut, Copaíba, Buriti and Passion Fruit. Other ingredients also available in powder form include Jojoba, Peach and Sweet Almond Oils.

But the quality process does not stop at processing. The quality of the products during transportation and storage are ensured by using specific packaging that both ensures the quality of the contents and helps to protect it during transportation.

"All of our products go through a vigorous packaging process to ensure that they remain in top condition for longer periods of time and under all transport conditions,"​ said Ulisses Matiolli Sabará, president of Beraca. "All our products are packaged in a nitrogen atmosphere that is light protected and then hermetically sealed to guarantee the shelf life.

"Investments in industrial equipment and storage systems, as well as special treatment for the oils has reached $2.8 million in the last 3 years, allowing Beraca Ingredients to achieve the most sophisticated Health & Personal Care customers and markets like France, USA and Japan."

Last month Beraca launched a new line up of active ingredients sourced primarily from the Brazilian rainforests and said to be completely natural.

The range includes four new formulations, one for treating dandruff, an anti acne formula, a skin revitalizing formula and a hair care treatment, all of which are being launched on a global basis, with a particular emphasis on both European and North American markets.

Currently the company's annual turnaround is around $6 million derived from sales in 17 countries around the globe, with growth rates of 45 per cent per year.

Beraca's range of cosmetics ingredients is aimed at the rapidly growing market for natural-based cosmetic products. In the US alone - currently the company's largest market - continued growth in the category means that the market for natural personal care products now runs at $5 billion, an increase of 50 per cent since 2000.

And the market continues to grow. Predictions are that by 2009, the value of the US market will be $7.9 billion.

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