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Danone, DMC, Michelin and Crédit Agricole Centre France partner to create a advanced biotechnology precision fermentation platform

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 biotechnological process to produce bio-based materials and ingredients.

With an investment of more than €16 million 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 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 a promising way to meet this challenge. Precision fermentation 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.


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