Marubeni Corporation and Nordic Bioproducts Forge Partnership to Collaborate on Sustainable Utilisation of Biomass

Japan’s Marubeni Corporation (Marubeni) and Finland’s Nordic Bioproducts Group Oy (NBG) announced the signing of a comprehensive Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) aimed at fostering a long-term collaboration on the sustainable utilisation of biomass, particularly woody biomass, to reduce dependence on fossil-based resources toward a more sustainable future.

Emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases, which are the leading contributors to global warming, are a worldwide problem. Fortunately, new technologies and industries are emerging that utilise sustainable woody biomass, known as biorefineries, to manufacture products with a reduced environmental impact.

NBG’s AaltoCell is a method used for the hydrolyzation of lignocellulosic materials to produce high-quality cellulose derivatives, which are essential for the production of pharmaceuticals and foods. In addition to woody biomass, the technology supports a wide range of cellulose-rich raw materials while promoting sustainable mass production at a lower cost.

Moreover, it has environmentally friendly features, such as the ability to use residues generated during the manufacturing process as biofuel and utilizes a smaller carbon footprint method to produce resins and textiles that have traditionally been derived from fossil fuels and chemical intensive processes.

As an example, an independent third-party assessment has shown AaltoCell’s potential to achieve an 80% reduction in the carbon footprint of the manufacturing of cellulose derivatives compared to that of conventional methods.

Through this MoU, the partnership aims to establish a biorefinery business utilising AaltoCell technology.

The venture will focus on processing woody biomass, such as kraft pulp and plantation residues, sourced from Marubeni’s plantations in South Sumatra, Indonesia, covering a total project area of approximately 290,000 hectares.