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Evonik aims to expand amino acid capabilities through acquisition

By Jane Byrne

07-Nov-2016
Last updated on 29-Nov-2016 at 11:50 GMT2016-11-29T11:50:11Z

© istock
© istock

Chemical company, Evonik, said it has put in a bid to buy methionine technology from French company, METabolic EXplorer (METEX).

The Clermont-Ferrrand producer has developed a fermentation process for manufacturing methionine for use in feed additives and textile fibers that the German group believes will help strengthen its biotechnology platform.

Evonik said it submitted a binding offer for the amino acid technology, patents, essential bacteria strains, and the inoLaTM brand on 27 October.

The bid is said to be subject to approval by Evonik committees.

METEX and Evonik said they may also explore the possibility of a collaborative research alliance in the field of biotechnologically produced amino acids.

Both companies said they would not disclose any information on next steps until the deal was signed off.

Singapore facility

Last month, Evonik said construction got underway on a second plant in Singapore for the production of the amino acid, DL-methionine, for use in animal nutrition. That complex, when completed, will have an annual production capacity of 150,000 metric tons. It is expected to become operational in 2019. 

This summer also saw Evonik launch an L-valine product, ValAMINO - the fifth essential amino acid in its portfolio for use in pig and poultry feeds, which the producer said would help to reduce the use of crude protein in the diets of those animals without any loss in terms of growth performance.

And July saw Evonik’s new L-lysine production site in the Brazilian state of Paraná go on stream, bringing an additional 80,000 metric tons (Mt) of capacity.

“The new [Biolys] plant in Castro is our first amino acid plant in Latin America. We will target the [pig and poultry] markets in Latin America in general and in Brazil in particular,” a spokesperson for Evonik told us then.

The company said the site was chosen because of its access to raw material supplies such as corn, its logistical connections, and its closeness to local markets.

The Biolys facility has been built at an industrial complex in Castro owned by Cargill.

Evonik is already running a cooperative manufacturing operation with the US agribusiness giant for the production of Biolys in Blair, Nebraska, which has an annual capacity of 280,000 metric tons following on from expansion work there in 2012.

Meanwhile, a Biolys production facility with 100,000 Mt capacity, planned for construction in Volgodonsk in the Rostov region of Russia by Evonik through a joint venture with the local Varshavsky group, is "still in its realization phase."

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