GFBiochemicals is a company of Italian origin, with a 1,200-tonne production facility in Caserta and plants at Brightlands Chemelot Campus and, since the takeover of Segetis, also in the USA (Minnesota). There is a small team in Geleen which includes R&D manager Rudy Parton. Together with several DSM colleagues, he came to GFBiochemicals in 2014.
‘The company worked on a direct route from C6 sugars to levulinic acid from 2008 to 2014. It used the Biofine process under licence for that purpose. But GFBiochemicals could not get this technology operational in Caserta. At the time we analysed the process in Caserta and made changes to the hardware and the process conditions and added new equipment. The major drawbacks were in the reactor technology and the purification of the levulinic acid.’
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