17 August 2012 09:27 [Source: ICIS news]
Novozymes and Cargill have since 2008 collaborated to develop microorganisms that can efficiently convert renewable feedstock into 3-hydroxypropionic acid (3-HP), which is a possible chemical precursor to acrylic acid, they said.
The new agreement will see BASF joining the collaboration to develop the process for conversion of 3-HP into acrylic acid, the firms said.
“The company [BASF] plans initially to use the bio-based acrylic acid to manufacture superabsorbent polymers,” they said.
The annual global market volume of acrylic acid is around 4.5m tonnes with a value of $11bn (€8.91bn) at the end of last year, according to the statement.
The acrylic acid market has been growing at a rate of 4% per year, the statement added.
One of the main applications of acrylic acid is in the production of superabsorbent polymers that can soak up large amounts of liquid and are used mainly in baby diapers and other hygiene products.
It is also used in adhesive raw materials and coatings.
Financial details of the agreement were not disclosed.
($1 = €0.81)
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