Expansion Of USDA BioPreferred Program Presents Significant Opportunities For Industrial Biotechnology Companies
November 14, 2017
The U.S. Department of Agriculture finalized three rules designating new categories of biobased products as eligible for BioPreferred purchasing by all federal agencies and contractors. Biotechnology Industry Organization Executive Vice President, Industrial & Environmental Section, Brent Erickson released the following statement:
"A growing number of companies are using industrial biotechnology to make environmentally safe everyday products such as plastic containers, laundry detergents, carpets, and even clothing. These biobased products satisfy growing consumer demand for green products because they meet the most important environmental goals, including reducing use of petroleum and other non-renewable resources, reducing waste in landfills, and lowering greenhouse gas emissions.
"Reducing dependence on petroleum and lessening environmental impacts are important to future U.S. economic growth and competitiveness.
"The USDA's BioPreferred program creates an important market for these green products by requiring federal agencies to give purchasing preference to biobased products when available and comparable to petroleum-based products. Many biobased products are already clearly cost competitive with fossil-resource based materials. The USDA's BioPreferred program provides companies incentives to increase production of these products. Companies that adopt industrial biotechnology can cut costs, make better products, and increase profitability."
The USDA's newly finalized rules designate 27 new categories of products, including biodegradable containers, films, and cutlery; carpets; clothing and laundry products. In all, the new rules will make as many as 2400 new products from 562 companies eligible for preferred purchasing.
Biobased products are commercial or industrial goods composed of biological products, forestry materials, or renewable domestic agricultural materials, including plant, animal, or marine materials. Made from renewable plant and animal sources, biobased products are generally safer for the environment than their petroleum-based counterparts. They are usually biodegradable or recyclable. The BioPreferred website address: biopreferred.go.
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