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Cirad

European guayule market

Dorget M., Amor A., Palu S., Pioch D.. 2016. In : Berti M.T. (ed.), Alexopoulou E. (ed.). Industrial crops: promoting sustainability. Rochester : AAIC, p. 30-30. Association for the Advancement of Industrial Crops International Conference, 2016-09-24/2016-09-28, Rochester (Etats-Unis).

Some companies are involved in guayule market or research since years or decades (YULEX, PANARIDUS, ENERGYENE, BRIDGESTONE, COOPERTIRES, PIRELLI, VERSALIS). Each company has its own strategy: focusing on high value non allergenic latex, producing end-products (tires, gloves) rather than to sale raw-material (latex and / or rubber), valorizing all the guayule (Parthenium argentatum Gray) co-products (latex, rubber, resin, bagasse...), increasing agricultural yield...Some European research projects (EU-PEARLS) allowed to build a European guayule (but also Kazakh dandelion) knowledge, partnership and intellectual property especially on water extraction process. VERSALIS, an Italian company, is involved on sustainable polymer production, bio sourced monomer (for PLA synthesis) and bio polymers like guayule rubber. A key point for developing a sustainable guayule production chain would be boosted by an integrated approach for valorizing the whole bush, not only the rubber part, according to the bio refinery concept which requires a dedicated integrated process. CIRAD / CTTM patented process is the starting point of a European guayule natural rubber commodity chain for profitable and sustainable market. We will give some detail concerning CIRAD / CTTM strategy to help to develop guayule in Mediterranean Europe. Involvement of the Bio-Based Industry with Private and Public Partnership (BBI-PPP) is needed. The aim of several EU partners involved in a European Innovation Partnership (EIP) commitment is to support any project to recognize Guayule rubber as a critical raw material. Guayule field extension and access to a processing plant is needed at this stage in Europe. Demand for guayule latex and rubber is real, but for potential investors profitability has to be demonstrated at a semi-pilot scale before commercialization and substitution of 10% of the total NR import from Asia to be achieved by 2025. (Texte intégral)

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