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Camelina research receives funding for bioenergy and biofuels

The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) has awarded a multi-million grant to a team of researchers looking at the potential of camelina as a biofuel feedstock.

The team, led by Kansas State University professor of grain science and industry Xiuzhi Sun, has received just over $5 million (€3.7 million) and also comprises of researchers from Montana State University, University of Wyoming, StrathKirn, SBT LLC, Montana Gluten Free and Henkel.

‘Although camelina is currently grown in Montana and Wyoming, it will expand to the Northern Great Plains area, and it's possible that agricultural producers in Kansas might be interested in incorporating the crop into their cropping systems in the future,’ Sun says.

Once harvested and processed, Sun hopes to develop new technologies to chemically convert camelina oil and meal to a variety of adhesives, coatings and composites.

‘The overall goal is to make oilseed camelina a cost-effective bioenergy and bio-based product feedstock,’ she adds. ‘This project will generate information that will build a foundation to make non-food oilseeds a better resource for biofuels, chemicals and bioproducts, with minimal negative impact on food crop systems or the environment.’