USA – Solugen, a climate technology company, has joined forces with ADM in a strategic partnership to boost the production of plant-based organic acids.
The collaborative plan involves the construction of a manufacturing facility in Marshall, Minnesota, adjacent to ADM’s existing corn complex.
This new facility, spanning 500,000 square feet, represents a significant step in scaling Solugen’s unique chemoenzymatic process.
It will leverage ADM’s supply of dextrose to expand the production of lower-carbon organic acids and explore the development of novel molecules to replace conventional fossil fuel-based materials.
The partnership aims to commercialize these biomaterials across various sectors, including energy, water treatment, agriculture, construction materials, cleaning products, personal care, and more.
Gaurab Chakrabarti, co-founder and CEO of Solugen, highlighted the importance of this partnership in meeting customer demand for high-performance, cost-competitive, and sustainable products.
He noted that Solugen’s Bioforge platform plays a crucial role in bolstering domestic capabilities and supply chains to help the US achieve its ambitious climate targets.
Solugen’s Bioforge platform utilizes a combination of computationally engineered enzymes and metal catalysts to convert plant-derived substances into materials traditionally derived from fossil fuels.
“This process is known for its high efficiency and scalability, resulting in a significant reduction in carbon emissions compared to traditional manufacturing methods,” the CEO noted.
On the other hand, Chris Cuddy, President of ADM’s Carbohydrate Solutions business, emphasized that sustainability is a key driver of ADM’s growth and strategic evolution.
He pointed out that this partnership allows ADM to diversify its product stream while supporting various plant-based solutions in areas such as sustainable packaging, pharmaceuticals, plant health, construction, fermentation, and home and personal care.
The initial phase of the project is set to increase Solugen’s manufacturing capacity and commence plans for a multi-phase large-scale US Bioforge buildout.
This expansion will also free up Solugen’s Houston operation for research and development efforts into additional molecules and market applications.
According to Chris, Marshall, Minnesota, is an ideal location due to its abundant corn supply and advanced corn-to-dextrose conversion technology.
Construction of the new facility is scheduled to commence offsite this year, with on-site construction starting in early 2024.
The initial phase, expected to be operational in the first half of 2025, is projected to create at least 40 permanent jobs and an additional 100 temporary construction jobs during the commissioning phase.