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Parabel reveals natural plant source of vitamin B12


20th November 2019

Parabel USA, producer of plant protein ingredients, today announced the discovery of a natural plant-based source of Vitamin B12 in its water lentil crop.

Independent third-party laboratory testing has confirmed that Parabel's water lentil crop and the ingredient LENTEIN plant protein contain the natural bioactive forms of Vitamin B 12 adenosylcobalamin, methycobalamin, and hydroxocobalamin. The water lentil, or duckweed as it is commonly called, was shown to contain approximately 750 % of the US recommended daily value of the bioactive forms of Vitamin B12 (per 100 grams of dry plant).

Dramatic shifts in the adoption of plant-based diets coupled with an aging population means this critical vitamin is receiving increasing levels of attention. Although natural bioactive forms of Vitamin B12 can be found in meats and dairy products, some diets require supplementation of the vitamin, as it is typically absent in plant foods. The most common supplemental form of Vitamin B12 is synthetic, which has had some consumers concerned. 

Geoff Palmer, one of the top 100 most influential vegans in the USA according to Plant Based News, commented "I have reviewed the testing and I feel confident that the Parabel team has identified bioactive Vitamin B12 in their products. This could be a game changing event for the plant-based food community as it allows one to consume bioactive, natural, whole food plant-sourced B12."

In addition to Vitamin B12, the water lentil has been referred to as the world's most complete food source as a result of the high levels and quality of protein, vitamins and minerals in the plant. The rapidly growing water lentil crop can double its biomass in a matter of days, which leads to high yields and a scalable option for the exploding plant-based movement.

Dr. Matthew Van Ert, Parabel's Chief Scientific Officer concludes "Parabel's hydroponic systems represent a scalable and potentially revolutionary platform to produce highly nutritious plant foods that contain bioactive vitamin B12 forms. Along with partners, we will begin conducting bioavailability studies to determine the effectiveness of water lentils as a natural, plant-based solution to address vitamin B12 deficiencies."