Ecovia Renewables, Inc., a renewable Michigan-based chemicals company developing cost-effective biobased chemicals and fuels, was selected as a grand prize winner at the 2017 Imagine Chemistry Challenge finals for their submission “BioGel polyglutamic acid: a sustainable alternative to polyacrylates.”
,The first Imagine Chemistry event, hosted by AkzoNobel and KPMG, invited start-ups and academics to find solutions to some of the top chemistry-related challenges the industry is facing today. One of 20 finalists, Ecovia’s EcoSynth fermentation-based platform utilizes microbial communities to produce high value, based materials.
Ecovia’s lead product line centers around polyglutamic acid (PGA) chemistry. Termed BioGel, formulations of PGA can be used for many applications, including formulation ingredients for personal care products, soil amendments for water retention, and super-absorbents in cores for infant diapers. BioGel materials can be tailored to absorb up to 300x their weight in water and formulated with adhesive properties.
Produced through fermentation of renewable biomass, BioGel is 100% non-toxic, eco-friendly, and biodegradable. The BioGel material is difficult and expensive to manufacture conventionally. The reduced costs and feedstock-tunability of the novel manufacturing process enables new BioGel applications that are now economical.
“AkzoNobel clearly recognizes the needs and market opportunities for sustainability and green chemistry, and is poised to become a global leader in this area” says President and Founder Dr. Jeremy Minty. “We at Ecovia are honored and delighted to have been selected as a finalist and grand prize winner in the Imagine Chemistry competition.”