Skip to Main Contents

Yamaha Motor Launches Full-scale Life Science Business*.

October 3, 2006

The Company has completed a clean room plant capable of producing a stable supply of high-quality astaxanthin raw material and will start providing it to final product manufacturers in October.

Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd. (the “Company”) has completed construction of a plant designed to produce Haematococcus algae, the raw material for astaxanthin, in Fukuroi City, Shizuoka Prefecture. It will begin mass production on October 26. The plant is capable of producing about 20 tons of Haematococcus algae in dry weight per year. An outsourced firm will then refine the raw material to yield astaxanthin extract, to be sold under the brand name “PURESTA Oil” from the later part of October. Buyers include, supplement, food, cosmetics and other manufacturers.

*The Company's biotechnology-related businesses are now collectively called the “life science business.” Accordingly, the Company changed the name of the Bio Business Division to the Life Science Business Division as of October 1.

The new plant is located on a site measuring approximately 37,000 m2 in the Kuno Industrial Park in Fukuroi City, Shizuoka Prefecture. The two-story steel-frame structure has a building area of about 1,800 m2 and total floor space of 3,300 m2. The plant features state-of-the-art cultivation facilities centering on the proprietary “Yamaha High-efficiency Bio Reactor” indoor cultivation system, with a production system designed to meet Supplement GMP (Good Manufacturing Practice) standards. It can produce astaxanthin extract efficiently with a perfect sanitation for stable production in concentrations as high as eight percent.
Moreover, the Life Science Institute, which was completed in July 2005 as the Company's R&D base for its life science business, is located adjacent to the plant. By integrating R&D and production, the Company aims to achieve higher productivity.

The Company is positioning astaxanthin and other life science-related operations as a next-generation strategic business. The recent completion of the raw material production plant signals the Company's full-scale launch into the life science business.

Ahead of the late October PURESTA Oil release, the Company, in collaboration with Taiyo Kagaku Co., Ltd. is developing an astaxanthin water-soluble product to be released late this year. The Company will start selling this new astaxanthin product to beverage manufacturers, hoping to leverage its substantial marketing power to develop new applications in that industry. The Company also plans to introduce astaxanthin-based supplements next spring. Sales of these new consumer products and raw material are expected to amount to about 1 billion yen in the first fiscal year. The Company aims to achieve annual sales of 30 billion yen in 2015.


The Company continues to pursue its own research and development as well as collaborations with universities and private research organizations to bolster research into microalgae with the greatest business potential. Through the life science business, the Company seeks to realize its corporate mission -- delivering a new level of excitement and helping bring fulfilling lives to people the world over.

  • The Company will display products at Health Ingredients Japan 2006, held at Tokyo Big Sight from October 4 (Wednesday) to 6 (Friday), and at ifia Osaka 2006, held at INTEX Osaka from November 8 (Wednesday) to 10 (Friday). The Company's new astaxanthin oil and water-soluble product will be displayed in these exhibitions. Please visit the Yamaha Motor booth when you come to either show.

Outline of the Astaxanthin Raw Material Plant


Kuno Industrial Park, Fukuroi City, Shizuoka Prefecture

Production start date:

October 26, 2006

Building area:

Approx. 1,800 m2

Total floor space:

Approx. 3,300 m2

Building structure:

Two-story steel-frame structure

Main facility:

Yamaha High-efficiency Bio Reactor
(Haematococcus algae cultivation equipment)

Production capability:

Approx. 20 tons/year (Haematococcus algae, in dry weight)


Approx. 2 billion yen (building and equipment)

Exterior view of the astaxanthin raw material plant

Interior view of the plant

Life Science Institute

For inquiries regarding the PURESTA astaxanthin product, contact:

Keisuke Nakagawa or Hanako Jingai
Life Science Business Division
Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd.
Tel.: +81-538-32-9900 Fax: +81-538-44-0888

Back to