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Novozymes enters biocontrol sector

Enzymes giant Novozymes has revealed that it is diversifying into biocontrol in agriculture. The company said that it sees this emerging sector as having huge growth potential, as pests continue to cause billions of dollars in damage to crops every year while pressure is continuing to restrict the use of chemical pesticides.

Libra invests in low-salt betaines

Libra Speciality Chemicals has broken ground on a multi-million-pound capital investment programme at its site in Irlam, UK. This will see new technology installed to produce novel low-salt betaines, while expanding the existing plant’s capacity from 32,000 to 50,000 tonnes/year.

Germany: Associations reject industry closure idea

The German Chemical Industry Association (VCI) and the German Chemical Employers' Association (BAVC) have joined forces to “vehemently reject” calls for a three-week shutdown for the chemical-pharmaceutical industry. This has been suggested as part of a nationwide ‘hard lockdown’ to fight the rapid growth in COVID-19 infection.

Novasep in double exit

French-based CDMO Novasep has announced two sales. Henagen, its Belgium-based viral vectors operation, has been sold to Thermo Fisher Scientific for about €725 million, while, in a much smaller deal, it also intends to sell its chromatography equipment division to Sartorius Stedim Biotech.

ECHA: Authorisation has positive impacts

The need to obtain REACH authorisation before using harmful chemicals “has sped up substitution and reduced risks to people’s health and the environment - at a reasonable cost”, according to a recent study by ECHA that was based on information from 2010-20.

Ineos supports antimicrobial research institute

Ineos has given £100 million, one of the largest ever donations given to a UK university, to launch a new research institute to combat the growing global issue of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) at Oxford University. It will be based at two sites linking the Department of Chemistry and the new Life & Mind Building, which is currently being built.

Sumitomo Chemical targets carbon neutrality

From 1 February, Sumitomo Chemical will establish a strategy council and a cross-functional team led by executive officers supervising research planning and coordination, Responsible Care and related functions to promote and formulate strategies for achieving carbon neutrality by 2050. This will be based on four approaches:

* Minimising greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions associated with its production activities through innovation, and deploying new technologies to that end

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