Sasol, Holiferm seal sophorolipid biosurfactants agreement
Sasol Chemicals and Holiferm have entered into a partnership to jointly develop new biosurfactants and enable the broad commercialisation of sophorolipids.
Under the terms of the agreement, Sasol will purchase the majority of sophorolipids produced at a new Holiferm manufacturing facility in the UK.
The facility, which is located in Wallasey in north-west England, is under construction and scheduled to begin operations in early 2023.
Sasol will also fund Holiferm research and development to accelerate innovation initiatives to help meet growing demand for sustainable solutions in primary surfactants.
Biosurfactants use natural materials to produce surfactants, which are key ingredients in personal care products.
Sophorolipids are biosurfactants made through fermentation, using yeast to convert vegetable oils and glucose into final product.
The Holiferm process offers an extensive reduction in carbon footprint comparative to conventional surfactants.
“We are increasingly using bio-based raw materials to make our products, as we work with our customers to develop solutions that in turn make their products more sustainable,” said Silke Hoppe, vice-president of essential care chemicals for Sasol Chemicals.
Holiferm managing director Richard Lock added: “We at Holiferm truly believe in the future of biosurfactants and fermentation technologies to reduce the dependence on fossil-based chemicals. The drive, passion and commitment Sasol Chemicals is showing with Holiferm Limited are a perfect fit, for both companies and the planet as a whole.”
Financial terms of the agreements were not disclosed.