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29/09/2022 Origin by Ocean

Caerulo™ - an algae-based thickening agent

A thickener, stabiliser, rheology modifier, emulsifier and humectant.
Caerulo™ - an algae-based thickening agent

Look at the ingredient list of any viscous liquid product made for consumers, and it will most likely include a thickening agent. There are edible thickeners for gravies, gels, goos and gums and thickeners you don't eat used in paints, inks, detergents, and cosmetics.

Thickeners give liquids consistency

Thickeners are chemical workhorses of liquid products. They give liquid products viscosity, structure, texture, flow, feel, taste and extended shelf life. You wouldn't have creamy yoghurts or vegan meatballs not to mention detergents and cosmetic products without thickening agents. They would also have a lot more oil-based products to get the right texture.


We will consume 1 million tonnes or 20 000 full truckloads of thickeners in our food by 2025.

So it really makes a difference where these thickener ingredients originate from. Significant volumes mean significant business. The food thickener market alone (not counting non-edible thickeners) in 2020 had a value of $13.8 billion. In 2031 it will reach £22 billion in 2031.

Caerulo's watery beginnings


Origin by Ocean has created its own thickener out of algae: Caerulo. Caerulo is isolated from seaweed and purified in our biorefinery process to yield a pure white sodium alginate thickener with no toxic or harmful chemicals. Our process can intake all brown seaweed species from invasive species like sargassum to sustainably farmed Fucus vesiculosus and kelp.

Caerulo is sustainable and highly functional not just in food applications, but also in cosmetics, detergents, textile processes and hygiene products. For example, in cosmetic products, Caerulo moisturises the skin and leaves the skin feeling smooth while also stabilising the whole formulation.

Substantial results

Caerulo alginate is not just a thickener but also a stabiliser, rheology modifier, emulsifier and humectant. We have tested it in numerous vegan products, dairy formulations, cosmetic products, detergents, and textile dyeing processes. It has remarkable properties, making product formulations effective and increasing their performance in multiple ways. It is an ecologically sustainable choice for any consumer product: using Caerulo in a product instead of a regular thickening agent will decrease your product's carbon footprint because it will be removing carbon from the oceans.

Get to know more about how Caerulo can change your product formulation to be sustainable, biobased and effective. Contact us.

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Mamata Bhattarai brings new expertise in industrial applications