Vitamins are defined as essential micronutrients that are required in trace quantity and cannot always be synthesized by mammals.
Apart from their in vivo nutritional and physiological roles as growth factors for men, animals, plants and microorganisms, vitamins are now being increasingly introduced as food/feed additives, as medical-therapeutic agents, as health aids, and also as technical aids.
Most of the vitamins are now industrially produced and widely used in foods, pharmaceuticals and cosmetics.
Vitamin C or L-ascorbic acid, or simply ascorbate ( the anion of ascorbic acid ), is an essential nutrient for humans and certain other animal species.
The vast majority of animals and plants are able to synthesize vitamin C, through a sequence of enzyme-driven steps, which convert monosaccharides to vitamin C.
Without the vitamin C available from eating fruit and vegetables, we could not survive.
Industrially, vitamin C is produced from glucose using an unusual blend of biological and organic chemistry.
It is a 5-step process with one of the steps making use of a microorganism to make the chemical change.
Chromatographic techniques are used during the process to purify the vitamin C.