Genetic assets from Mendel added to product development programme

Repreve Renewables has purchased certain genetic assets or germplasm for its giant miscanthus grass product development programme from Mendel Biotechnology, a privately held company in Hayward, California.

The purchase adds Mendel's diverse miscanthus germplasm pool to Repreve's proprietary biomass crop establishment technologies, its current product development programme including the exclusive license of Freedom Giant Miscanthus and its novel business model. The purchased germplasm provides an opportunity to accelerate the development of non-invasive varieties of miscanthus.

These new varieties will be developed to have increased yield potential when planted in
different geographic areas, in varied soil types and under a range of agronomic conditions.

The company is investing in research to develop high-yielding feedstocks to meet the growing demand from biomass market customers, such as those that develop advanced biofuels, chemical intermediates, solid fuels, animal bedding and pulp and paper.

'The purchase of these miscanthus genetic assets is a natural progression of our efforts to expand biomass production. We target production on underutilised or marginal land not suited for food and fibre crops. To ensure a consistent, viable source of feedstocks, we will develop additional varieties that grow well in these fields across the country,' says Repreve CEO Jeff Wheeler.

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