|4 November 2016|

Finland

The pigments and compounds found in autumn leaves could be used by a number of industries

Leaf-processing technologies being developed by the VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland (VTT) could be good news for the cosmetics, textile and feed and food industries.

The colourful pigments in leaves, which come from orange and yellow carotenoids and red anthocyanins, could be used for colouring cosmetics and textiles, while its compounds – including carbohydrates and protein – could have a use as food colourings and preservatives, or nutritional supplements.

In the VTT process leaves are dried, ground and compounds are extracted.

“In laboratory experiments, we discovered several, promising alternative ways of utilising leaves. Piloting assays are under way, in which we are examining how our methods work in practice and what quantities of valuable compounds can be extracted from the leaves,” said Liisa Nohynek, Senior Scientist at VTT.