Recent media coverage of advances in organic health supplements has highlighted the benefits of administering probiotics, non-pathogenic living microorganisms that positively affect the intestines of host humans or animals by restoring indigenous microbial balance. While applications for the relatively nascent probiotics market exist in functional foods & beverages, dietary supplements, and animal feed, significant R&D is underway to innovate new products for expanding commercial usage. With this anticipated expansion in probiotic applications alongside the ongoing surge in the functional food market, the global probiotics market is expected to witness steady growth from current day to be worth over 46 billion USD by 2020.
CONVENTIONAL PROCESS & CHALLENGES
Probiotics Production Process
Typical probiotics production processes follow a similar structure, proceeding from raw material to cell culture in a bioreactor before entering a liquid-solid separation stage. Prior to a final drying or evaporation process, each process train may then integrate a unique set of additional stages depending on the final product goal, i.e. the introduction of a fermentation stage to achieve particular cell derivatives.
Challenges in Production
Both the cultivation broth emerging from the bioreactor and fermentation are challenging high-solids concentrate streams. When compared to current industry standards in membrane filtration, FMX is reliably capable of achieving higher recovery and higher concentration with lower run time, while offering additional economic benefits through boosting efficiency of the drying process and reducing power consumption.