First stop is Solazyme's announcement on December 13 where the company said it has successfully completed multiple initial fermentations at ADM's Clinton, Iowa, facility. The fermentations were conducted in 500,000-liter vessels, 4x the scale of the vessels in Solazyme's Peoria facility.
|ADM Clinton, Iowa, plant|
Solazyme it is targeting 20,000 tonnes/year production of its algae-based tailored oils using corn dextrose (for feeding the algae) at the ADM facility starting early 2014, and expects to expand to 100,000 tonnes/year in subsequent years. Solazyme is currently constructing a 100,000 tonne/year facility in Moema, Brazil, under the Solazyme-Bunge joint venture, which is expected to begin operation in Q4 2013.
The key question here, as posed by analyst Lawrence Alexander of Jefferies & Company in a recent equity report, is whether the expertise used at Clinton can be extrapolated to the Moema site.