Canada funds Anomera project to develop carboxylated-cellulose nanocrystals for cosmetic applications

By Deanna Utroske contact

- Last updated on GMT

© Getty Images \ (Elena Ostankova)
© Getty Images \ (Elena Ostankova)

Related tags: cellulose, Canada, degradable, side-stream

This week, the Department of Natural Resources Canada announced $4.25 million in funding to support the development of cCNC from forestry sector side streams.

The initiative promises to be a win for the regional economy, for the forestry industry’s sustainable future, and for cosmetic and personal care brands looking for an ingredient with the benefits of microbeads and the biodegradability of nanocellulose.

Howard Fields, President and CEO of Anomera Inc. explains the project to build a demonstration-scale facility that will produce carboxylated-cellulose nanocrystals for skin care and personal care product applications, saying, “Our initiative to replace plastic microbeads worldwide with Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) – harvested Canadian forest products is truly redefining the future of cellulose.”

“As we move into the industrial markets,” ​he says, “there will soon be tens of thousands of tonnes of demand for the Canadian-sourced cellulose nanocrystals.”

And Fields expresses his company’s thanks for the government investment in this week's press release as well, adding that “Anomera is pleased to be supported by the Canadian and Quebec Governments to enable us to expedite the development of our advanced technology which creates new products from Canadian forests in a sustainable manner.”

Cellulose specialist Anomera moves to commercialize beauty ingredient

Anomera is a Montreal, Quebec – based material science company making ingredients for several industries: rheology modifiers for the paints and coatings industry; excipients, drug delivery release systems, cell scaffolds, and more for pharma and medical applications; inputs that add strength and durability to plastics and composite materials; performance enhancers for the cement industry; and more.

The demonstration-scale facility that $2.25 million from Natural Resources Canada and $2 million (repayable) from the Canadian Economic Development program will build is about beauty ingredients.

“The novel technology that is being commercialized as part of this project, carboxylated-CNC, will lead the company to meet its first targeted market: a green solution to replace plastic and silica microbeads in personal care and cosmetics with its biodegradable product line, ChromaPur,” ​explains this week’s press release about the government’s investment.

Importantly for the economic development of the region is the fact that the facility will create 20 new permanent jobs.

“The Government of Canada has made concrete commitments to demonstrate that a strong economy and a healthy environment go hand in hand,”​ says Mélanie Joly, Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages, Minister responsible for Canada Economic Development for Quebec, and Member of Parliament for Ahuntsic-Cartierville, in the release. 

“Among other actions,”​ she says, “we are making strategic investments in clean technologies, which are central to our economic recovery plan. By helping SMEs like Anomera to become more innovative and competitive and by boosting innovation to develop greener technologies and products, we are also 

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