In 2014, Flora joined forces with Gandalf products, a Canadian brand from the company Viesun, which has been around in the province of Quebec since 1994. Gandalf Spirulina™ is an algae superfood made from the Arthrospira platensis species. Spirulina is not only a nutrient-dense superfood, but it’s also space food, having been used by NASA astronauts! However, not all spirulina is made with equal care and quality. Attention to these aspects is what truly elevates and sends Gandalf’s versions into a higher orbit.
Gandalf’s Hawaiian Spirulina is one-of-a-kind, only available in Canada and is made in—wait for it—Hawaii! Harnessing the power of the Hawaiian sun and deep ocean water minerals, Gandalf Spirulina™ is chock full of essential nutrients like beta carotene, iron, calcium, the liver-protecting antioxidants phycocyanin and superoxide dismutase, chlorophyll, zeaxanthin/lutein, B vitamins, and vitamin K.
If there’s a food that has a higher protein content than spirulina, it’s relatively unknown; 60% protein by weight is nearly double the next most cited examples of high-protein foods (like chicken and turkey). This protein even includes all essential amino acids.
Viesun tests their spirulina for 15 key quality control markers and uses independent labs to verify results for things like heavy metals, protein content, microbiology, and fatty acid content. Even though their aquaculture is a controlled system, they still include testing for contaminant toxins that can appear in wild-grown spirulina, like microcystins and BMAA. It is also tested for radioactive contaminants and screened for plastic particles from the ocean. Their spirulina even meets the exacting standards of California’s Prop 65 regulations for contaminants.
Viesun emphasizes quality and potency with their packaging: their products use a light- and oxygen-resistant, resealable aluminum foil bag with a very thin, transparent food-grade plastic layer inside. Their BPA, BPS, and phthalate-free packaging is designed to keep air and light out to retain freshness and potency—especially important for sensitive nutrients like spirulina.
Gandalf Hawaiian Spirulina is especially rich in beta-carotene, an essential pro-vitamin that helps maintain eyesight, skin, mucus membranes, and immune function, and aids in the development and maintenance of bones, teeth, and night vision. During the drying step of the spirulina’s sea-to-shelf journey, a unique drying process called Ocean Chill™ removes oxygen to protect the beta-carotene from any oxidation.
Gandalf Hawaiian Spirulina is also a good source of the fatty acid gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), which can otherwise be found in evening primrose oil and supports healthy skin, zeaxanthin and lutein for brain and eye health, as well as two special antioxidant compounds: superoxide dismutase, an antioxidant enzyme for liver health, and a unique compound called phycocyanin not commonly found in most fruits or vegetables. There is approximately 400-500 mg of C-phycocyanin per 5 g powder in Gandalf Spirulina™. Phycocyanin is a powerful antioxidant compound and blue-green pigment, like chlorophyll, that protects cells and tissue, especially of the liver and brain, from free radical damage.
Available as tablets, capsules, and powder, this super green food can be added to smoothies or simply taken with some fruit and washed down with water to infuse your system with some Hawaiian energy year-round.