Grape Seed Markets
Answered by: Richard Alan Miller
Question from: Aliekber
Posted on: November 10, 2005

I am producing wine equipment. My customers ask that how they can sell grape seeds.

Grape seed extract is a natural plant substance that has a concentrated source of oligomeric proanthocyanidins (OPC). These anti-oxidants help protect cells from free radical damage and also promotes healthy circulation. Grape Seed Extract is rich in polyphenols, a compound that’s high in antioxidants. Studies have shown OPC to be more powerful antioxidants than vitamin C, E, and beta-carotene

Grape Seed is not actually a botanical, per se, and would be considered a "gleaning" operation for a by-product. I personally have never had a call for it (28 years of marketing). I know that when markets become tight, like now in the vineyards, there is an urgency to look for alternative markets for the crop and their by-products.

Not having any background with fruit, my first place to start looking for alternative markets might be with the State Department of Agriculture. If this has been sold previously, they would have a record of that sale. This would be especially true for larger quantities, as you indicate. I would also look toward the chemistry found in the seed. What is it?

My guess is that grape seed has always been in abundance, and that while there may be a limited market for it, finding the "individual" who used it in a formulation might be very, very difficult. This might be consider one of those niche markets not dusted very often... Without any experience or chemistry information, I would be uncertain where to begin.

One final thought does occur. More and more of the health food trade is now crossing over botanicals with fruits and nuts. They even now include grains such as Flax and Green Dhai Lentils. This means that their Trade Resource Guide might also contain a listing. One might start by looking at Whole Foods Directory and/or Natural Foods Product Directory. They are both easily obtains from the library.

I’m sorry I can’t help further, but this now touches on the "outer limits" of my own background and experience. If you do find uses, please let me know. I have a bunch of friends in the Napa Valley who would love to also participate in this kind of marketing.

By the way, I have worked for vineyards in the past, setting up inter-crops suitable to be companion planted with grapes. Such crops include Thyme, which can be taken with a rotary mower. They also have the side benefit of killing nematode and thrip, due to the large quantities of thymol.

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