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18th June 2024  Content supplied by: Danone

Danone, DMC, Michelin and Crédit Agricole Centre France Announce Biotech Open Platform

  • Danone, DMC, Michelin, and Crédit Agricole Centre France join forces to create a cutting-edge biotechnology platform.
  • The Biotech Open Platform's ambition is to accelerate the development of precision fermentation.

Two major French industrial leaders, Danone and Michelin, the American start-up DMC Biotechnologies, and Crédit Agricole Centre France, a key investor in the region, have agreed to create the Biotech Open Platform to bolster the development of advanced fermentation processes, particularly precision fermentation, on a larger scale. Precision fermentation is a revolutionary biotechnological process for producing bio-based materials and ingredients.

With an investment of over 16 million euros in the first phase, the industrial and technological platform will be located in Clermont-Ferrand within the Parc Cataroux Center for Sustainable Materials, an innovation accelerator supported by Michelin. The Biotech Open Platform is also supported by several public and private institutions: the University of Clermont Auvergne, the company Greentech, the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes Region under the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and Clermont Auvergne Métropole.

As the industry looks for alternatives to fossil-based resources, it is turning to innovative and sustainable solutions to meet its supply needs while providing more efficient materials. Biotechnology - and particularly precision fermentation - is one of the most promising ways to meet this challenge. Precision fermentation is a cutting-edge technology that uses microorganisms like bacteria, yeast, or fungi to produce proteins, enzymes, and other molecules that are used in industry. It is particularly suited to innovation in the agri-food and materials sectors. Although fundamental research has made considerable progress, biotechnologies must now be developed on a larger scale.

The Biotech Open Platform's ambition is to accelerate the development of precision fermentation by enabling the scale-up of innovative products and processes already tested in the laboratory. By 2025, the project plans to install an initial demo-scale production line, including a fermenter and purification equipment. Additional equipment will be installed in the following years, including a second production line. This ramp-up will enable the platform to meet the scale-up needs of its founders and to gradually open it up to other companies facing the challenge of scaling up in the industrial biomanufacturing sector.

Florent Menegaux, President of the Michelin group, commented, “The Michelin group is pleased to announce the creation, with its partners, of the Biotech Open Platform – a unique tool that will enhance the development of bio-sourced materials, a key challenge for the industry of tomorrow. Located in Auvergne, it exemplifies Michelin’s unflagging commitment to developing innovation and the regions where the Group operates."

Antoine de Saint-Affrique, CEO of Danone, added, “At Danone, we have always been focused on investing in the future of food, and this partnership is the next step in this journey. We look forward to working with our partners to develop cutting-edge fermentation technologies that will accelerate innovation, health benefits, and decarbonization in the food industry. We are proud to be part of this collective effort and to strengthen our contribution to meet the challenges facing the industry today."

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Date Published: 18th June 2024

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