Renewable oil firm Solazyme has announced what it hopes is the ‘first of many’ agreements with Anglo-Dutch consumer giant Unilever for the commercial supply its Tailored Algal Oil.
Solazyme has been producing its biofuels for a while now as it looks to replace palm, coconut and other plant oils with algae oil.
World demand for palm oil, used in thousands of products from soap to plastics, is a major driver of the destruction of native forests in Indonesia.
Years in the making
Unilever and Solazyme have been collaborating for five years on multiple projects with increasing levels of success culminating in this initial supply agreement, which covers the first of their jointly developed tailored oils with an initial supply of at least 10,000 metric tons.
The oil will be produced at the Solazyme Bunge Renewable Oils facility located at Bunge’s Moema sugar mill in Brazil, with supply delivery planned to begin in early 2014; and Unilever expects to purchase the full volume within twelve to eighteen months.
“This first supply agreement is the result of many years of successful collaboration, during which Solazyme demonstrated strength as a partner and continually achieved key development milestones outlined by our world-class scientific and technology teams,” says David Blanchard, Chief Category R&D Officer, Unilever.
It is the consumer giant’s belief that Solazyme’s tailored oils technology can provide sustainable competitive advantage across many categories and brands.
Likewise, with Unilever being one of the biggest consumer packaged goods companies and its continued focus on sustainability, demonstrated by its Sustainable Living Plan, Solazyme sees a bright future producing sustainable products.
“Unilever is a highly valued strategic partner that has greatly influenced our ability to scale our tailored oil technology over the past several years,” says Jonathan Wolfson, CEO, Solazyme.
“We look forward to the opportunity to continue to build and expand our relationship with Unilever as we take this next step in commercializing the world’s first tailored renewable oil production platform. We expect this to be the first of many supply agreements with Unilever.”