Tunable biosurfactants for global challenges

Surfactants are an essential component of a wide variety of formulations across personal care, home care, cosmetics, and industrial applications. They are prevalent in the personal care products we choose and even the packaged goods we eat.

Surfactants are an essential component of a wide variety of formulations across personal care, home care, cosmetics, and industrial applications. They are prevalent in the personal care products we choose and even the packaged goods we eat.

For the last 20 years, the surfactant industry has championed sustainable efforts to curb greenhouse gas emissions by shifting the production of surfactants from petrochemicals to bio-based alternatives derived from plant-based feedstocks such as palm oil and manufacturing by chemical catalysis.

However, the rapid increase in demand for vegetable oils coupled with deforestation concerns have challenged the palm oil industry, and the presence of unwanted contaminants in ingredients creates risks for both suppliers and brands. These efforts to improve ingredient options have been good enough for a time, but the age of chemistry alone is looking to biology to offer better ingredient options. Biosurfactants are quickly taking centre-stage as a big innovative jump into the solutions needed for the future.

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