At hearing on Farm Bill 2023, sustainable materials leader will outline how strengthening the USDA BioPreferred and lending programs will support American farmers and drive economic growth

SAN DIEGO, California and WASHINGTON, DC (November 14, 2022) – Geno CEO Christophe Schilling will appear before the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry on Tuesday, November 15 to outline a number of measures the U.S. government can take to advance U.S. leadership in biomanufacturing and support American farmers. Schilling will discuss how the federal government can strengthen its BioPreferred program by enforcing federal purchasing requirements for biobased materials and will advocate for the section 9003 loan guarantee program, which is vital to fund capital-intensive projects that are essential to scale domestic biomanufacturing. All programs Schilling will advocate for have a direct impact on advancing U.S. leadership in biomanufacturing, which in turn will build new and valuable markets for American agricultural products while supporting strategic and urgent climate action.

“The United States has a golden opportunity to seize the role of global leader in biomanufacturing for generations to come,” said Schilling. “By scaling the market for biobased products, we can build a powerful new economic engine that creates jobs in rural communities and helps American farmers while supplying sustainable products that American consumers increasingly demand. To achieve these goals, it’s essential that the government maintain funding levels for loan guarantees and enforce federal purchasing requirements around biobased products. These measures will also enhance American supply chain transparency and resilience, while reducing reliance on products made overseas. We grow it here and we can make it here too.”

The company manufactures plant-based versions of popular materials using inputs such as corn which is widely produced across America’s heartland. Geno is providing technology for a $300M biomanufacturing facility in Iowa by Qore® (the JV of Cargill and HELM) that will produce 65,000 tons per year of plant-based materials and provide jobs throughout the region. Geno’s beauty ingredient Brontide® butylene glycol is BioPreferred certified and helps large beauty and personal care companies hit their climate goals by reducing the carbon emissions of their ingredients by over 50% in comparison to the traditional fossil fuel-based ingredient.  

Geno also plans to build its first solely owned facility in an agriculture-rich region like the Midwest with support from the USDA 9003 loan guarantee program. This program guarantees up to $250 million to “develop, build or retrofit facilities to support new and emerging technologies, and produce advanced biofuels, renewable chemicals and biobased products.”

Schilling is emerging as a strong voice to advance domestic biomanufacturing with a track record of working closely with the government and key industry groups to make the U.S. the world leader in the bioeconomy while advancing American agriculture. He spoke at the White House Summit on Biomanufacturing in September where the Administration laid out a comprehensive plan to support biotechnology and biomanufacturing, and was recently invited back to provide guidance on implementing the Executive Order. Schilling is Chair Emeritus of Biocom, the largest advocacy organization for California’s life sciences sector, and serves on the Biotechnology Innovation Organization’s (BIO) Industrial & Environmental Section Governing Board.

The hearing, Farm Bill 2023: Rural Development and Energy Programs,” will begin at 10 am EST on November 15, 2022. To learn more, visit here.

Geno has closed multiple high-impact deals over the last year to accelerate the commercialization of sustainable materials, with the potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 100 million tons in upcoming years. Recent milestones include scaling plant-based nylon, a collaboration with lululemon to bring plant-based materials into lululemon’s products, a venture with Unilever and Kao to scale plant-based alternatives to palm oil with a 50% lower carbon footprint, and a launch of its energy nutrition ingredient, Avela™ (R)1,3-butanediol.

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About Geno

Geno is harnessing biology to remake everyday products and materials built by and for the planet. In response to the urgent climate crisis, Geno is developing and scaling sustainable materials derived from plant- or waste-based feedstocks instead of fossil fuels. Geno’s technology, built over the last 20 years, now drives materials and ingredients in applications ranging from cosmetics, carpets, and functional foods and beverages to home cleaners, apparel, and more. To learn more, visit genomatica.com.

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