Hello blog readers! After 2 months of hiatus (and recovering from health problems), I am hoping to slowly get back to writing and let me start with this news from UK-based industrial biotechnology company, Plaxica, which recently announced the sale of its two technology business, its Xylex® cellulosic sugar technology and Versalac® lactic acid process technologies, to South Africa-based pulp and paper company, Sappi Limited.
Sappi has been expanding its biorefining expertise and part of their strategy is to extract C5 sugars from pulp mill hydrolysates and separate the xylose-rich sugars from the lignin. Sappi has recently commissioned a demonstration extraction unit at its Ngodwana Mill in South Africa during April 2017 to extract a sugar-rich prehydrolysate stream from the pre-hydrolysis kraft (PHK) pulping process. Sappi said its hydrolysate extraction capabilities combined with the proprietary low cost of Xylex® technology will enable the company to participate in the downstream value chains, which include furfural, glycols and xylitol.
I’ve reported more about this news as well as the future of Plaxica and its remaining technologies on Tecnon OrbiChem’s September Biomaterials newsletter.