Cellana LLC, a leading developer of algae-based biofuels and bioproducts, has received a three-year $5.5 million grant to develop a protein supplement from algae as a byproduct of algal biofuels production and to demonstrate its nutritional and economic value in livestock feeds.
Funding is provided through the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)'s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)'s Biomass Program through the Biomass Research and Development Initiative and will help increase the availability of alternative renewable fuels and biobased products to diversify the nation's energy resources. The award was made through a competitive selection process.
Cellana LLC, a subsidiary of Cellana, Inc. (formerly HR BioPetroleum, Inc.), will receive $5,521,173 for the project, titled "Developing a New Generation of Animal Feed Protein Supplements." Under this grant, Cornell University will be conducting large-scale animal feeding trials using algae biomass provided by Cellana to identify the most economical and efficacious strains of algae.
"Cellana is looking forward to providing affordable and nutritious food supplies from its production of marine microalgae. These bioproducts support Cellana's biorefinery business model and can help the livestock industry remain competitive in Hawaii and in other parts of the world," noted Martin Sabarsky, president and CEO of Cellana, Inc.
In addition to the new grant program, Cellana has programs with universities in the U.S. and Norway to test proteins from top candidate strains to replace fishmeal in aquaculture feed. Fishmeal protein, an increasingly unsustainable source of aquaculture feed, has reached its peak in global production and become expensive.
"Cellana is also looking forward to providing a commercially viable supply of renewable biofuel in Hawaii to help it meet its renewable energy goals. All critical elements of the company's algae cultivation technology have been demonstrated at our six-acre facility in Kona and will be incorporated at our proposed commercial plant in Maalaea, Maui. We are on track for this commercial deployment by 2014," Sabarsky added.