Microbial pigments are gaining enormous attention owing to their propitious therapeutic properties and natural bright hues made them interesting to use in pharmaceutical, nutraceutical, cosmetic, food and textile industries. These microbial secondary metabolites are not just constricted to natural bio-dyes but some of them also possess splendid antibacterial, antiviral, antimalarial, antidiabetic, anticancer, antioxidant and other biological features. Due to different anthropogenic activities and environmental pollution, the global demand for natural dyes is increased. The demand is forecasted to be worth $ 5.0 billion USD by 2024, growing at a CAGR of 11%. However, the wide acceptance of the microbial pigments is still hindered because of the intense competition with inexpensive synthetic dyes, low-yield and high extraction cost.
Microorganisms tend to produce an array of important secondary metabolites for numerous ecological benefits. Though these metabolites are not essential to support the growth of the microbe, these are known to play a vital role in exhibiting phenomenal properties that entices various industries, for instance, pharmaceutical, nutraceutical, paper and textile, cosmetics, and relative fields. Over the last few decades, there has been a surge in the expeditious discovery and synthesis of secondary metabolites with novel properties. Processing and production of commercial goods from agro-based raw materials generate large amounts of agro-industrial waste. Significant developments in the area of microbial biotechnology have opened up new avenues for judicious utilization of the agro-industrial waste towards the synthesis of high value-added bioproducts. Directing the flow of agro- industrial waste generated towards its utilization as the main source of nourishment for the microbes can readily curtail the expense that goes in production of commercially-important metabolites.