Australia partners with Amyris to create Southeast Asia biotechnology hub

By Natasha Spencer

- Last updated on GMT

Australia and Amyris create Southeast Asia biotechnology hub

Related tags Southeast asia

The Queensland Government in Australia collaborates with Amyris to create a new platform for sustainable ingredient production in APAC.

Together the Government of Queensland, Australia and industrial bioscience company specialising in renewable products, Amyris, will develop a biotechnology hub in Southeast Asia that will serve the personal care and nutraceutical markets.

The first industrial production at the new facility is anticipated in 2020. If achieved, the hub, which will create sustainable produce for Southeast Asian markets, is expected to generate between $60-$80 mn (€55.9-€74.6 mn) in annual revenue, returning backers’ investment in the production plant in two-three years.

The move aims to answer APAC consumer demands for personal care products that contain sustainable ingredients.

Consumers throughout the marketplace are choosing personal care purchases that contain natural sustainable ingredients derived from plants as opposed to animals.

As multifunctional benefits and high-quality properties are also heavily sought by APAC consumers, who are investing in highly-beneficial skin care and nutraceutical products,  companies are looking to merge sustainability with performance to answer the region’s demands.

The production plant, which will be located in Southeast Asia, will seek to provide APAC with sustainable products by producing Amyris's personal care and nutraceutical actives, along with farnesene-derivative products.

"We're delighted to working with Queensland to facilitate the creation of what we expect will be a leading Industrial Biotechnology hub supplying growing demand in Southeast Asia,"​ said John Melo, Amyris President & CEO.

Supporting the economy

Local partners in Queensland, Australia, will support the production plant build, and as such, the biotechnology hub will help to progress the local economy and sugarcane industry.

"We welcome Amyris to Queensland and look forward to their pursuit of innovative ideas. Amyris will enhance Queensland's reputation as a supportive investment location for the industrial biotechnology and bioproducts sector,”​ said Annastacia Palaszczuk MP, Premier of Queensland, Australia.

Queensland, Australia will act as the base for the industrial biotechnology hub and manufacturing unit to supply the APAC markets, which are increasingly looking to the US for expansion.

"The sustainability and performance of the local sugarcane industry ​enables us to make this our second global technology and manufacturing centre... we expect this to be our first ​large scale implementation of our capital light growth model, where we bring the technology and the end customers and our partners fund and operate the manufacturing. This model enables us to create more opportunities to provide sustainable products for a better planet,"​ added Melo.

Amyris uses ingredients that are naturally derived from sustainable sources and has an international presence that complements the current personal care landscape in APAC.

The production plant marks the duo’s second development this year. In June 2016, the Australian Institute for Bioengineering and Nanotechnology at The University of Queensland signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Amyris to back ongoing progress of a Queensland-based biotechnology sector that uses feedstock from local sugarcane.

In an introduction to a special newsletter dedicated to natural and sustainability sectors​, Cosmetics Design Asia reported how biotechnology, and in particular fermentation is hot on the toes of traditional ingredient sourcing to take the number one spot of providing sustainable and environmentally-responsible products in APAC.

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