The upscale and exploration of new high-value ingredients from microalgae

Today, it is estimated between 200,000 and 1 million species of microalgae on earth and 35,000 have been identified in international strain libraries. Among them, less than 10 microalgae are cultivated at large scale in standard production systems. The company Microphyt have successfully cultivated close to 50 different strains in its laboratory, and more than fifteen of these microalgae are regularly produced at large scale.  This represents an important source of novel active ingredients for cosmetic and nutraceutical markets and provides a portfolio of more than 35 potentiel ingredients in development. Discover in this article an overview of the latest innovative ingredients developed from adaptative microalgae and their benefits.



CAMARGUE is a unique and proprietary technology patented by Microphyt, based on the hydro-biomimetic principle. Mimicking nature’s most efficient growth conditions, it takes advantage of the full biological potential of microalgae while ensuring a high level of control. A CAMARGUE-based demonstration facility is already in operation at Microphyt and has positioned the company as a global leader capable of producing the broadest diversity of microalgae species at industrial scale. This platform leverages the amazing biodiversity of microalgae, and their unique bioactives which offer numerous solutions for nutrition and wellbeing.

The aim of SCALE project is to deploy this technology into industrial flagship plant (TRL8) able to produce each year more than 100 tons of high-value ingredients from microalgae.

It is planned that SCALE project will deliver at industrial stage about 8 to 10 high value added ingredients, some of them currently being tested by the project partners and other still in development for food, food supplement, feed and cosmetics applications.



Regarding their “novel nutrition” portfolio, Microphyt has recently received the results of the first fully completed clinical trial on human validating the benefits of their ingredient GamePhytTM on many parameters of the cognitive function among experienced e-gamers. Two other clinical studies are currently on-going with BrainPhyt™ ingredient on elderly population. Results are expected for mid-2023.


Brainphyt TM

Brainphyt TM is a natural bioactive compound derived from the microalgae Phaeodactylum tricornutum, produced in Microphyt’s facilities, in an environmentally controlled eco-friendly photobioreactors free of GMO, pollutants, or pesticides. Its unique and patented composition is the product of 4 years of systematic research, vigorous testing, and product innovation that has been approved by the Food and Drug Administration in the United States of America in 2019. This unique ingredient represents a major breakthrough for the food supplement market, with proven key benefits to significantly improve cognitive performance such as short and long-term memory, enhance learning and also to support the reduction of brain cells’ oxidative stress. They efficacy of BrainPhyt™ has been demonstrated through 7 preclinical studies so far and two human clinical trials are currently running.


GamePhyt TM

GamePhyt TM is the first bioactive complex which is 100% natural and has been specifically designed for, and clinically studied on experienced e-gamers. This unique and patented ingredient is a smart combination of a microalgae extract (Phaeodactylum tricornutum) and a botanical extract (Guarana) that lead to a means of boosting e-gamers’ performance and skills. This patented and unique ingredient has been studied on over 60 experienced e-gamers as part of a double-blind, randomized and placebo-controlled clinical trial with an improvement of cognitive performance after a single dose and after 30-day supplementation. GamePhyt™ has shown to significantly increase focus, alertness, accuracy and reaction time; improves decision making and processing speed; reduces mental fatigue and support enhancement of sleep quality and visual comfort. All of this, with no side effects. GamePhyt™ has officially been launched during the SUPPLY SIDE WEST 2022 trade show in Las Vegas (November 2022).


For advanced beauty, 3 new products were launched recently:

Luteana TM

Based on its research on cognitive and systemic health, Microphyt has developed an innovative approach to sensitive skin using a Tahitian golden microalgae species, Tisochrysis lutea, which has an extraordinary ability to adapt since it is considered sensitive yet it lives in a stressful environment, i.e. hot waters with a high salt and acidity content. Based on its unique sustainable technology, Microphyt developed Luteana™, a precious oily extract containing powerful compounds such as omega-3 fatty acids, sterols and xanthophylls, namely fucoxanthin, to rebalance and lastingly relieve sensitive skin.


Renouvellance TM

Adopting a biomimetic approach, Microphyt was inspired by a resilient and adaptogen red microalgae, Porphyridium cruentum, capable of protecting itself to survive in extreme environments for millions of years. By exploring the defense mechanisms of red microalgae elaborated millions years ago and shared with humans, Microphyt has designed Renouvellance™, an innovative active ingredient able to activate the skin’s natural defenses response and shield cells to better face external stressors. Thus, the complexion is evened out and the skin has a healthier appearance. Obtained thanks to Microphyt’s sustainable patented technology, Renouvellance™ contains a high content in 2 synergic compounds: phycoerythrin, a pink antioxidant pigment able to absorb light energy and boost natural defenses & exopolysaccharides, a marine polymer able to chelate heavy metal and maintain cell’s structure.


PhycoSi TM

Always looking for more sustainable solutions, Microphyt has succeeded in developing a process for extracting the silicium contained in a manufacturing co-product and thus recycling a diatom extract intended for disposal. This new upcycled bioactive ingredient launched in November 2022 contains bioavailable marine silicium that show a two-step actions: 1) it deeply recharges and restructure the dermis. Thus, the dermis density is increased and the skin elasticity and firmness are improved;2) it protects and restores skin at the surface by improving the skin exfoliation and smoothing the cutaneous microrelief. PhycoSi™ stands out as a fundamental skin reviver.


Discover more information about these ingredients on the website and meet Microphyt’s team at AlgaEurope Conference in Rome, 13-15th December 2022: In 2023, they will participate in CosmetAgora in Paris, 10-11th January 2023 Booth 46 and “Sports And Active Nutrition Summit USA 2023” in San Diego, 15-17th February as Gold Sponsor to present GamePhyt product.

Update after 1 year of work

On 22nd and 23rd of June SCALE brought its 11 European partners together in Baillargues, South of France, for their first General Assembly. This event was the opportunity for the consortium to present all the results of their work, such as the beginning of the construction of the plant with a dedicated visit, the launch of two bio-inspired cosmetic solutions, and the first clinical study results in food supplement.



This flagship plant scale-up the microalgae production process from demonstration scale to Flagship industrial scale with an annual capacity production of more than 100 tons of high-value ingredients.

The plant will deliver large scale production of Microphyt’s ingredients for the food, food supplements, feed and cosmetics sectors. Its construction began at Microphyt’s facility in France in September 2021 and represents the first-of-its-kind fully-integrated microalgae biorefinery at an industrial scale.

The biorefinery aims to implement sustainable processes to convert microalgae biomasses into a variety of ingredients.



Over its first year, the efforts of the consortium were concentrated on the new plant design and start of the building. 3000m2 of the plant is now achieved with the creation of 15 new jobs. Microphyt worked closely together with Evolys and Sunti respectively for the design of LED-based lightening solution and the energy diagnosis to analyse the thermal and power demand of the extended site.

New microalgae-based ingredients have already been tested by the industrial partners for the targeted applications: Institut Paul Bocuse Research centre for food, Plameca for food supplements, Lallemand Animal Nutrition for feed and Chanel Perfume & Beauty for cosmetics.

On their side, Tecnalia and Nutrasteward started their evaluation of the life cycle sustainability assessment and regulatory frameworks respectively. B4C worked closely with Microphyt and all the partners to launch the visual identity of the project and its related media: website, Linkedin and Twitter accounts, flyer and poster. In order to reinforce the dissemination strategy, PNO started the identification of the relevant stakeholders within and around SCALE value chains.

The next steps will continue to deliver new microalgae & ingredients as well as accelerating the work programs on.



Microphyt develops, produces and markets microalgae-based ingredients for Advanced Beauty and Novel Nutrition. Since the Kick-off of the project in June 2021, Microphyt has received the results of the first clinical study in Novel nutrition and launched 2 new products in Advanced Beauty: Luteana™ and Renouvellance™. Stay tuned for more information about these innovative ingredients !


Read the press release

EU Green Week 2022

The EU Green Week is one of the main European events dedicated to environmental policy, which occurs yearly. In 2022, the priority was given to “the European Green Deal – the EU’s sustainable and transformative growth strategy for a resource-efficient and climate-neutral Europe by 2050“. In that context, from May 30 to June 5, 2022, various virtual events, two days of conferences and several virtual exhibitions were organised.


The European Green Week initiative

The EU Green Week is the key event in the EU environment policy calendar in early June. This annual opportunity  to debate and discuss European environmental policy attracts policymakers, leading environmentalists, stakeholders and other interested parties from across Europe and the globe.

Down the years, EU Green Week delivered on its objectives, improving the understanding of EU environmental policies, feeding into debates about their development, and improving the overall image of the EU among citizens and stakeholders around Europe.

This year, the European Green week  focused on the ‘European Green Deal’. It was articulated around a high level debate on what happens to the EU environmental policy in times of crisis and three important aspects of the transformation – circular economy, zero pollution, and biodiversity. Dedicated events were organized throughout the week by the European Commission, but also by independent entities.


SCALE contribution

Light micrograph of Micrasterias radiosa, a freshwater green alga, family Desmidiaceae

SCALE is an interesting example of how the bio-based industry is helping to replace non-renewable fossil resources with “waste” and accelerate the chemical industry transition to circularity.

SCALE will allow a greater independence from raw materials by supporting the emergence of microalgae as a commercial renewable feedstock to be used as a natural alternative to synthetic compounds, animal extracts and petroleum derivatives in the food, food supplements, feed and cosmetics sectors.

The project will help to reduce greenhouse emission, as the cultivation of microalgae does not emit any greenhouse gas, and partners will investigate ways to optimize energy efficiency and to reduce carbon emissions from the industrial activities of the plant.

SCALE will aslo help to replace fossil-based material with biobased, renewable material (contribution to the EU’s 2050 long-term strategy for a climate-neutral Europe), by offering credible, novel, natural and renewable microalgae-based alternatives to fossil-based products in cosmetics (petroleum-based ingredients used for texturing and silicone oils), food supplements and feed (synthetic carotenoids), bringing the same or better properties with less i

Press Release, Microphyt announces the launch of SCALE, the world’s first fully-integrated microalgae biorefinery

About SCALE – Key Takeaways

Microphyt, a leading company in the production and marketing of microalgae-based bioactive ingredients is announcing the launch of SCALE to accommodate new products roll out and growing demand:

  • It will deliver large scale sustainable production of Microphyt’s natural specialty ingredients for nutrition, food & beverage, personal care, and wellness industries.
  • Its construction begins at Microphyt’s facility in France in 2021 and represents the first-of-its-kind fully-integrated microalgae biorefinery at an industrial scale.
  • SCALE has received a grant of €15m; the single largest award from the Bio-based Industries Joint Undertaking for sustainable aquatic production.

Download the press release