NPA Allowed Processes for Producing Natural Products

Published on October 14, 2019. Last Updated on June 4, 2020.

The National Products Association (NPA) specifies processes which are permitted in the manufacturing of natural products that qualify for certification by the organization. Processing methods matter for preserving the bioactive properties of the ingredients so that they can effectively benefit human health and well-being. Dr.UGro ™ products have been crafted using processes included in this NPA list

NPA Approved Processes for Natural Products


Expression: the physical or mechanical cold-pressing of plant botanicals to obtain essential oils

Reagents: NA

Catalysts: NA

Inputs: material derived from plants (flowers, herbs, spices)

Distillation – processes used to isolate essential oils from plants (i.e. flowers, herbs, spices) through the usage of high pressure steam

Extraction: Physical processes which acquire plant-derived extracts from original botanicals sourced from nature

Reagents: CO2, alcohol

Catalysts: none

Inputs: Plant material in the form of herbs, flowers and spices etc.

Esterification or Transesterification to Produce Esters: The formation of an ester bond between an alcohol and an acid which can be catalyzed by an alkali or an acid.

Reagents: NA

Catalysts: sulfuric/phosphoric acid: KCO3, NaCO3, NaOH, KOH, CH3ONa or CH3CH2ONa

Inputs: Acid and alcohol (e.g. fatty alcohol, glycation, ethanol, acetic acid)

Etherification of Glycerin Making Polyglyceryls: The process of forming ether bonds between two compounds of natural glycerin (see fat-splitting) to form polyglyceryls by heating with an alkali. Polyglyceryl products are indicated by the number of glycerin molecules joined together

Fat-Splitting of Oils to Produce Glycerin and Fatty Acids: Type of hydrolysis which splits natural fats and oils into fatty acids and glycerin

Reagents:  water in the form of high pressure steam

Catalysts: metal/metal compound catalysts (zinc oxide, nickel palladium, platinum)

Inputs: triglyceride fats and oils, carbohydrates and sugars

Fermentation: the process of converting carbohydrates into alcohol and carbon dioxide or organic acids

Reagents: NA

Catalysts: enzymes

Inputs: carbohydrates, yeasts, fungi, sugars, bacteria

Glucosidation of Fatty Alcohol and Glucose : the process of attaching glucose to an alcohol through a type of esterification

Reagents: NA

Catalysts: Toluene sulfonic acid

Inputs: glucose and fatty alcohol

Hydrogenolysis of methyl esters of an oil to make fatty alcohols: the use of hydrogen to break chemical bonds through the conversion of a fatty acid ester into a fatty alcohol and methyl or ethyl alcohol (whichever is used for the ester). This process can be utilized directly on the fatty acid without conversion to the ester first

Reagents: hydrogen sourced from natural gas

Catalysts: methanol, platinum, palladium, platinum

Inputs: methyl or ethyl ester of triglyceride fat/oil. Fat/oil original as input


Hydrogenation of oils: The reduction of unsaturated bonds by adding hydrogen with a catalyst to convert unsaturated fatty acids to saturated ones or waxes to oils

Hydrolysis of complex proteins into simple amino acids: the breakdown of complex proteins into water-soluble amino acids or peptides (if partially hydrolyzed)

Reagents: water

Catalysts: alkali or enzymes (KOH or NaOH)

Inputs: proteins, carbohydrates, sugars

Oxidation with Mild Agents: The conversion of alcohols and aldehydes to acids through oxidation

Reagents: dilute H2O2, silver and copper salts

Catalysts: copper and silver

Inputs: alcohols and aldehydes derived from plant sources


Saponification of Oils to Make Soap: the splitting of fats or oils into glycerin and free fatty acids by the addition of an alkali through a type of hydrolysis

Reagents: alkali (KOH or NaOH)

Catalysts: NA

Inputs: triglyceride oils and fats

Protein Fragment Acylation: the attachment of a fatty acid to a nitrogen-containing compound. The fatty acid is converted to a fatty acid chloride prior to the attachment to the nitrogen of a protein fragment

Reagents: NaOH or KOH

Catalysts: Thionnyl Chloride or Phosphorous Trichloride

Inputs: protein fragment and fatty aid

Sulfation of fatty alcohol: conversion of a fatty alcohol into a sulfate ester to produce a surfactant. The use of sodium lauryl sulfate is not permitted 

Reagents: sulfate/ SO3 and NaOH

Catalysts: NA

Inputs: fatty alcohol



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