Advanta US and Chromatin, Inc. have entered into a commercial license agreement for the development of sorghum.
Under the agreement, Chromatin will have a non-exclusive, royalty-bearing license to access sorghum germplasm from Advanta. "Having the ability to access and conduct research on quality sorghum germplasm, such as that from Advanta, is an important step in our path to advance sorghum's unique ability to provide a sustainable source of sugar, starch and lignocellulose," says Daphne Preuss, Chromatin's CEO.
Sorghum, is a high-yield, drought-resistant crop, and can be grown on 80 percent of the world's agricultural lands. This flexibility makes it possible to expand sorghum production onto marginal land and to direct its biomass to a range of bioprocesses, including transportation fuels, biochemicals, renewable materials and clean power.
Kansas is the nation's leading state in sorghum production. In 2009, the most recent year for which statistics are available, Kansas farmers harvested 224.4 million bushels of sorghum with a production value of $716.3 million.
Advanta's agreement with Chromatin allows it to expand existing markets and broaden the development of its germplasm into new global markets that Chromatin is entering in the "clean-tech" space.
"Advanta is committed to working with its partners to provide the next generation of improved crops," says Steve Ligon, Advanta US business manager. "Chromatin's focus on bringing advanced technology to sorghum, and its ability to access new market opportunities, increases the sales and distribution of Advanta's proprietary genetics."