The Bio-Based Revolution

June 12, 2012 |

10,000 ways to replace a barrel of imported oil? BioBased Digest launches today, to help sort out the news and products in this fast-growing sector.

Also introducing BioBase, which will launch in conjunction with Advanced Biofuels Markets this October in San Francisco.

When the USDA announced recently that there are 3,700 bio-based products now approved in its BioPreferred catalog, which is used by government buyers, we weren’t a bit surprised by the trend, but the rapid rate of growth and change is impressive and a welcome shocker.

For several years, while an international debate and development effort has been ongoing in the arena of bio-based fuels – a corresponding revolution has been occurring in the area of bio-based materials.

The list of product categories, alone, totals more than 100. Packaging, flavors, food ingredients, fragrances, fibers, pipes, paints, lacquers, thinners, solvents, lubricants, coatings, insulation, cleansers, films, detergents – well, the list goes on, and on, and on.

It turns out there is more than one way to replace a barrel of imported oil. In fact, according to the USDA, they expect that there are more than 10,000 of them.

That’s 10,000 ways to stimulate local economic development, 10,000 ways to reduce industrial or municipal waste, 10,000 ways to increase energy security, and 10,000 ways to reduce carbon emissions by embracing renewable products.

Even better – almost every bio-based product performs the same or better, cost the same or less, and you don’t have to change the patterns in your daily life, or pay a green premium, to buy and use them. Why not consume your way to a better world?

The USDA’s BioPreferred program

The BioPreferred program at the USDA, originally developed as a program out of the 2002 Farm Bill, does a superb job of tracking the array of industrial products – and promoting them to government buyers, who give registered bio-based products a Federal procurement preference.

And, of course, the US federal government represents, for many products, the world’s single biggest buyer, and a major customer for many others.

But then, there’s everyone else. From the corporate buyer or sustainability manager, to the consumer – and everyone in between – in the long supply chains that connect customers to the products they buy and use.

How are they to get reliable information, succinctly and independently – on a myriad of choices – and how are suppliers, policymakers, journalists, competitors, state and foreign governments, and all the other stakeholders from field-to-market?

All at the same time while recognizing that the world is getting more complex and the day isn’t getting any longer – and that people don’t want to read more, they want to read less, and have that reading time be more effectively used.

That’s what BioBased Digest is all about, three times (Tuesdays through Thursday) each week. And, at our BioBase event that will be held, initially, in conjunction with Advanced Biofuels Markets and the Advanced Biofuels Leadership Conference.

About BioBased Digest

In BioBased Digest, you can expect to find a series of tools designed to cover the fast-growing sector. Broadly put: News, Views and Reviews.

News. Starting with the R&D, policy, financial and manufacturing news flow that readers expect every weekday from Biofuels Digest – who’s making what, where, when, why and how. You’ll find that most of the companies that we already cover in Biofuels Digest make a whole bunch of very exciting bio-based products, too.

Reviews. But given that there are a handful of fuels, compared to the explosion of bio-based products, we’ll spend more time showcasing and reviewing product categories, and individual products, in the bio-based world. All the products we cover will be bio-based – but which of them deliver enhanced product performance, or lower costs within the supply chain or to end-users?

To that end, the 100 Hottest Bio-Based Products ranking process will be ongoing this summer – which will feature both invited selector and subscriber voting on the products out there in the market that best combine visibility and credibility

Plus a new feature – the A-List. You see, every product we cover is on the B-List – as in Bio-Based – but which of them deliver an outstanding cost benefit or product performance? Those are the A-List products, and we’ll be showcasing those each week in BioBased Digest, and at BioBase.

Views. What are the trends? Geographic, product category, feedstocks, policy, or finance – how is the market shaping up and where are the hot spots for opportunities or challenges? Our columnists and industry reports will help provide a lens with which you can see the whole picture.

Plus, a lot of the regular industry service features – including industry jobs, people on the move, and industry financial metrics.

About BioBase 2012

At BioBase, we’ll be doing many of the same things, only in a person-to-person environment that a live conference offers – starting this October 29-31 at the Wyndham Parc 55 in San Francisco, where the Digest and Green Power Conferences will present Advanced Biofuels Markets.

In San Francisco this fall, we’ll have an opportunity to showcase products, assess trends in bio-based product categories, bring together buyers and sellers, as well as look at the emerging policy, finance, R&D and market environments.

For some time, we’ve been covering renewable chemicals and, increasingly, bio-based products, in every issue of Biofuels Digest – and we’ll continue to do that for our readers that prefer a unified product.

But just this week, companies like Coca-Cola, P&G, Nike, Ford, and Heinz announced a major bio-based product initiative. And, with thousands of products on the shelf and more emerging every day – well, it is high time that bio-based products and intermediates had a publication to call their own.

Take the journey with us

In recent months, more than 12,000 daily Digest readers have signed up for “Renewable Chemicals Digest” or “Bio-Based Digest” in their Digest subscription accounts. So, we’ll start with a considerable audience – and we’re glad to have you with us.

If you haven’t yet added BioBased Digest to your subscription account, why not check it out?

Click here to sign up – it’s free.

I very much look forward to exploring this topic with you each week in BioBased Digest.

Your friend,

Jim Lane
Editor & Publisher

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