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Fermentation

“Fermentation really sits between R&D and production.

First, with both upstream (cell biology and strain improvement) and downstream (recovery and formulation) groups, we devise a strain and process where the molecule of interest is produced well. Our role is then to ensure we can produce huge quantities of stable, effective enzymes quickly and inexpensively enough to be commercially viable.

One of our core competencies is the ability to scale up from 10 millilitres to 3,000 litres right here in our laboratory. We then move to our fermentation plants, where the scale reaches as high as 360,000 litres.

It’s inspiring to see our re-engineered micro-organisms producing something that’s useful to people. A good example is the amylase we developed for the baking industry. This enzyme extends the shelf life of bread and other baking products. It also improves texture, reduces food waste, and is a far better solution than chemical additives.

It’s also very rewarding to see fresh bread containing our enzyme in the supermarket - only a year after we began working on it!”

“Process development can take us from the petri dish to a 4-story fermentor.”