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Biobased Products Initiatives

Biobased Industry Needs Assessment
Biobased products are growing in demand. This project will identify and create a contact database of key biobased products, service providers and companies in order to identify what is needed to assist with the development of this industry.

Opportunities for Biobased Coatings
Biobased coatings may present a significant opportunity for Minnesota businesses. The current scientific and technical literature contains reports of these opportunities, which may not be known by Minnesota companies. A compilation of these opportunities will be generated and disseminated to establish and grow this opportunity in Minnesota.

Higher Value Uses for Ag Fibers
Ag fibers, such as corn stover, wheat straw, and native prairie grass, are currently put back into the soil as nutrients, used in biomass, or in other low-value ways. This project will look at structural fiber reinforcement evaluation, creative new applications and carbon fiber development from agricultural fibers in order to identify higher value uses.

Soy-Based Polyol Research
This initiative will examine the feasibility of producing soy-based polyols, which are similar to fatty acids but more flexible, from soybean oil. Polyols can be used in the development of materials that contain polyurethane, such as insulation, foam packaging, and coatings. This initiative will identify the products and economic challenges and opportunities of converting soybean oil to polyols in biodiesel plants when biodiesel production is not profitable.