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Beef hides and livers the secret ingredients in new skincare and supplement range

20 September 2022

Watch this video to find out how MLA and FDI worked together to create value in low-value beef products.

A new, eco-friendly range of collagen products made using traditionally low-value bovine inputs such as hides and livers will soon deliver benefits across the entire beef value chain.

This world-first Certified Organic collagen skincare and supplements range is the highly anticipated result of a collaboration between MLA and Freeze Dry Industries (FDI), a manufacturer based on the Sunshine Coast.

Finding value in low-value products

Through funding from the MLA Donor Company (MDC), FDI was able to explore how freeze-drying technology could be used to extract collagen and create value from a range of traditionally low-value red meat products.

FDI’s Michael Buckley and Fiona Dobbrick were excited to discover this technology could be successfully applied to beef hides and livers, driving a 3–5x value uplift for these products.

“We identified that bovine hides were severely undervalued, and we knew we could change that,” Fiona said.

A risk worth taking

Despite doubts that the collagen extraction process would be possible, FDI persisted in conducting early-stage experiments and were able to successfully create products using freeze-dried bovine extracts through the process that had the desired amino acid protein profile.

Through this breakthrough, they were able to develop a skincare range as well as a range of Certified Organic capsules featuring collagen, liver, spirulina and strawberry in varying combinations that comprise the Organic Collagen Australia line.

These products will soon be available to the public, with the skincare range launching on 1 October and the supplement range launching soon after in November.

Fifth quarter’ key to expanding markets

Known as the fifth quarter of the carcase, low-value bovine and ovine inputs including glands and organs are experiencing a change in fortune that will provide benefits right through the supply chain.

Consumer demand for nutraceutical products sourced from grassfed cattle raised without pesticides or herbicides is growing by the day – with nutraceutical products such as those offered by Organic Collagen Australia top of the list.  

John Marten, MLA Program Manager – Food Innovation, sees these changes as a move in the right direction for opening up new markets for Australian meat processors.

“The impact of the fifth quarter is significant because it will allow us to play in world markets where we traditionally haven’t had a presence,” John said.

Fast facts: the Organic Collagen Australia products

What’s included in this range of products?

Certified Organic capsules including collagen, liver, collagen and liver, collagen and spirulina, and collagen and strawberry, as well as a skincare range.

What are the health benefits of these organic collagen and liver products?

Collagen is the most abundant protein in the human body, found in the bones, muscles, skin and tendons. However, as we age, our collagen levels decline, so supplementation can be of benefit. Beef liver is one of the most nutritionally dense foods in the world and is packed full of essential nutrients, such as iron, vitamin A and B12. 

What bovine inputs have been used to make these products?

Hides and liver from Australian Certified Organic pasture-raised cattle are used for these products.

When can we expect these products to be available?

The skincare range will launch on 1 October this year. The supplement range will launch in November.

Are there other similar products MLA is helping to develop?

MLA is actively working with several Australian processors and technology providers to better understand the opportunities for value adding to the fifth quarter of bovine and ovine supply chains.