Lallemand, Mascoma announce next generation bioengineered yeast

By Lallemand Biofuels & Distilled Spirits, Mascoma Corp. | June 10, 2013

Lallemand Biofuels & Distilled Spirits, a global provider of fermentation ingredients to the fuel ethanol industry, and Mascoma Corp., a renewable fuels company, have announced the introduction of their next generation advanced yeast product, TransFerm Yield+.

TransFerm Yield+ is a bioengineered drop-in substitute for conventional fermenting yeast that lowers costs and improves efficiencies for corn ethanol producers by:

- alleviating the need to purchase a significant amount of the expensive glucoamylase (GA) enzymes, comparable to the performance of TransFerm, which is Lallemand and Mascoma’s first bioengineered yeast product;

- reducing the production of glycerol; and

- mproving ethanol yield.

TransFerm Yield+ works by expressing GA enzymes, similar to TransFerm, and by significantly reducing the amount of glycerol production during fermentation via an alternative ethanol pathway that has been inserted in the yeast. This pathway creates more ethanol with no increase in the amount of corn needed. TransFerm Yield+ is the latest commercial application of Mascoma’s proprietary consolidated bioprocessing (CBP) technology platform.

In pilot-scale tests at ICM, the leading provider of engineering services to the ethanol industry, and commercial-scale trials at corn ethanol producers, TransFerm Yield+ consistently demonstrated ethanol yield improvements of up to 4 percent. Commercial-scale trials are currently underway at several corn ethanol producers. Both TransFerm and TransFerm Yield+, which are currently commercially available, are manufactured and distributed by Lallemand and jointly marketed and sold by Mascoma and Lallemand through their exclusive partnership.

“We are excited to launch TransFerm Yield+, our next generation bioengineered yeast, just a little more than a year since we introduced TransFerm to the market,” stated Bill Brady, president and CEO of Mascoma. “These two products are important steps in realizing our goal of establishing our CBP technology platform as the industry standard in the conversion of biomass to replacements for petroleum products. We look forward to rapidly developing and commercializing additional products that further improve the economics and efficiencies of corn ethanol and cellulosic ethanol production.”

“TransFerm Yield+ represents a significant step change in corn ethanol industry economics,” stated Bill Nankervis, president of Lallemand Specialties Division. “In these challenging times, this innovative new yeast can significantly improve ethanol yield through reduced glycerol production while simultaneously producing GA. Furthermore, TransFerm Yield+ has consistently demonstrated its industrial robustness and can handle temperature and ethanol stress as well as or better than conventional yeast. We believe that the bottom line benefit to the average ethanol plant will be measured in millions of dollars. Our partnership with Mascoma is bringing real value to the industry and we look forward to further innovations in the years ahead.”

Lallemand Biofuels and Mascoma representatives will be available to answer questions about this new yeast product at Booth #1013 of the 2013 International Fuel Ethanol Workshop in St Louis, Mo. In addition, representatives from both companies will be conducting an informational seminar in Room 105, of the America’s Center on June 11th at 12:30 pm.