Health Products - Krill Oil
Krill Oil is an extract of the abundant Antarctic Krill, a term applied to
describe over 80 species of open-ocean crustaceans. Of the seven species of
euphausiid crustaceans commonly found in the Southern Ocean, only two of them
regularly occur in dense swarms and are of particular interest to commercial
fisheries: E. superba and E. crystallorophias. E. superba is the species
commonly referred to as “Antarctic krill” and it is a widespread species, which
is subject to significant commercial fishing in the Southern Ocean and in the
waters around Japan.
Krill are the primary food of many whales and fish species, and now due to the
shortage of fish in our oceans due to over fishing, krill has now entered
the human food chain. We more familiar with krill's larger cousins which
we know as shrimp, lobster and crayfish, but krill are not harvested as a
primary food, they are harvested for the tiny amount of oil (body fat).
While currently not a major source of oil for the Omega-3 fatty acid market,
krill oil has generated a great deal of interest in the last few years because
of the unique form of the lipid in the krill which are very delicate and have
powerful enzymes within their digestive tract. This causes the krill to
deteriorate rapidly once they are caught so processing must be done at sea to
preserve the quality of the raw material and it takes many tones of krill to
produce a small amount of oil which is about 3% by volume resulting in 97% waste
that is either dumped at sea or incorporated into animal feed.
Touted as a remarkable new product featuring phospholipids specially integrated with omega-3 essential fatty acids - EPA and DHA
- for supporting healthy cell membranes, it is generally recognised that krill
is a nutritious food and krill oil may be valuable in helping people recover
from serious illnesses.
A less expensive and more sustainable source of essential fatty acids is found
in flax seed oil.
The production and processing of fish oils