Matsyafed, (Kerala State Cooperative Federation for Fisheries Development Ltd.) has developed chitone capsules, a natural chitosan product that can be used to counter obesity/overweight and high blood cholesterol level.
Commercial production has already begun at the chitosan plant of the Matsyafed at Neendakara in Kollam.
The over-the-counter (OTC) chitone capsules will hit Indian markets by early December 2009.
The plant has capacity to produce 1.5 lakh capsules a day.
Conventionally, chitosan is extracted from the exoskeleton of arthropods, including shell fishes.
The chitosan used for commercial production of chitone capsules by Matsyafed is extracted hygienically from exoskeleton of fresh marine prawns, crabs and lobsters.
The federation has an agreement with the Central Institute of Fisheries Technology, Kochi, for technical collaboration for extraction of chitosan and quality control in the production of chitone capsules.
The extracted chitosan is subjected to de-acetylation, a molecular re-arrangement process for removing the acetyl group to form unsaturated molecules of chitosan with a highly positive ionic structure and a very strong chelating property.
Several studies, clinical as well as toxicological have proven that chitosan is the most efficient and safe fat-absorbing fibre present in nature.
These studies have revealed that chitosan is a non-toxic, well tolerated effective natural product that helps to achieve weight reduction, normal BP and blood cholesterol reduction (LDL).
The federation is getting tremendous response from drug distributors across the country to market the product. It will finalise a few dealers shortly, at the national level.
The federation will also market chitone capsules through the outlets of cooperative federations in the State.
With the finalisation of this mutli-layer dealership network, the federation could ensure availability of this dietary supplement in all parts of the State.