Academy Lecture

How and What Are Collagen Supplements Made From?

We have heard a number of benefits Collagen has to offer to a human body. From anti-aging to stronger muscles, bones, and better joint health to beautiful and flawless skin; collagen is a super supplement that contributes a lot to overall health. Though it is made in the body naturally, its production is affected by aging.

That is why experts suggest adding collagen supplements in your diet to make up for the decreasing collagen and to keep your body in good health. But how exactly is this wonder supplement made? Of course, the process his highly scientific, but the curiosity surrounding as to how it is made has always remained to a common consumer.

Today, we will be discussing the manufacturing of collagen on an industrial and scientific basis to develop a better understanding of where it comes from.


Manufacturing of Collagen:

Collagen in itself is not a single substance but rather, a family of protein that is found in the connective tissues, muscles, bones, and skin of all animals in abundance. When collagen is used in the form of supplements (i.e. ingested from an outside source) the protein needs to be first broken down into hydrolyzed collagen (which is a polypeptide). It is hydrolyzed when denatured or gelatin collagen is subjected to the process of “hydrolysis”. This makes it easier to be digested and absorbed by the body, this means it does not turn to gel while retaining its surface-active properties.


Steps of the Manufacturing Process:

Processing of raw collagen to hydrolyzed collagen that is good for consumption involves the following steps:

·         Demineralization.

·         Extraction of collagen to form gelatin.

·         Obtaining hydrolyzed collagen from enzymatic hydrolysis.

·         Ion exchange.

·         Filtration.

·         Evaporation.

·         Sterilization.

·         Drying.


Hydrolyzed collagen is usually manufactured from the hydrolysis process of type 1 collagen (or its gelatin). Hydrolyzed collagen is a polypeptide composite that is manufactured from further hydrolysis of gelatin or denatured collagen.

This collagen can easily get dissolved in water and has no secondary displeasing taste. With hydrolyzed protein, very few bitter peptides are produced.


Resources for Manufacturing of Collagen:


1.    Collagen type 1 and 3 (Bovine):

Bovine collagen is primarily harvested from bovine resources (cows and pigs). It is extracted from the hide of the animals which is made into a flavorless powder; other ingredients are added to it for taste. The obtained proteins are hydrolyzed to break them down into more easily digestible amino acids. The main constituents of collagen obtained from bovine resources include type 1 and 3 collagens.

Aside from bovine resources, type 1 collagen can also be obtained from marine resources. It is present in the skin and scales of fish. Marine collagen has additional benefits to it that vary from collagen obtained from bovine sources.



2.    Type 2 Collagen:

As type 1 and 3 are harvested from bovine and marine sources, type 2 collagen can be harvested from other animal sources that are beside the ones for type 1 and 3. Type 2 collagen is commonly derived from chicken sternum cartilage. Type 2 collagen is made differently from type 1 and 3 collagens.


3.    Non-animal Based Collagen:

Collagen-based on animal extracts has been rejected y vegans along with collagen made from cow and pig rejected by different people for religious and region-based reasons. That is why new alternatives are being discovered to manufacture collagen that will be accepted without prejudice.

·         By chemical hydrolysis.

·         By enzymatic hydrolysis

Both methods are gaining traction on the industrial level due to feasibility and widespread acceptance without any judgment. But no matter the resources, consumption of collagen should be integrated into daily life to keep bones and muscles strong along with retaining a youthful glow in the skin.

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