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Karen Laird

May 25, 2016

2 Min Read
Amyris and CJ CheilJedang Corporation sign MOU on large-scale farnesene production

It’s been a busy spring for South Korea-based CJ CheilJedang Corporation (CJ). Having signed a Memorandum of Understanding with biotechnology company Metabolix just six weeks ago for a commercial manufacturing arrangement for specialty PHAs, CJ has now announced a new partnership, this time with California-based Amyris.

The companies have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to support large-scale manufacturing of Amyris’s farnesene in existing CJ facilities. Farnesene is a renewable chemical building block that can be used to produce a wide range of renewable products. Amyris produces farnesene via a proprietary yeast fermentation process.

The arrangement described in the MOU would enable Amyris to utilize CJ’s state of the art manufacturing capacity while minimizing the capital investment necessary to support projected near- and mid-term demand for product applications using farnesene.

“We are very pleased with the innovative approach of CJ CheilJedang, to support quickly ramping up our farnesene capacity with minimal capital investment,” said John Melo, President & CEO of Amyris.

He continued: “This partnership completes our commercialization strategy by providing us the ability to meet our farnesene demand from our current partners without new investment from Amyris and underpins our expected capacity needs to meet farnesene demand that would require building 3-4 new plants the size of our Brotas facility by 2020.”

This collaborative partnership is also expected to include the opportunity for CJ Bio (division of CJ CheilJedang) to market select Amyris products in Asian markets, as well as the potential for Amyris to develop several products for CJ Bio that meet the needs of their existing companies.

“We are excited to partner with Amyris and leverage the world’s leading Industrial Biotechnologies to support the growing bio economy in Asia,” said Hang Duk Roh, Head of CJ CheilJedang BIO.

The companies are targeting completing a definitive agreement by the first week of August 2016.

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