The John Sime Award recognises the most innovative technology presented at the Annual Forum for Industrial Biotechnology and the Bioeconomy (EFIB).

John Sime was a passionate advocate of innovation in bio-based technologies, with many years of experience working in technology transfer in earlier incarnations of the Knowledge Transfer Network. In 2012 the Forum for Industrial Biotechnology and the Bioeconomy (EFIB) organisers dedicated an award in his memory, in order to recognise John’s commitment to both EFIB and the bio-based economy and to remember him as part of the event.

The 2018 John Sime Award for the best innovation presentation was received by Matti Heikkilä, CTO of Finnish company MetGen Oy from EuropaBio’s Secretary General, Joanna Dupont-Inglis and Toulouse White Biotechnology’s Founding Director, Pierre Monsan in recognition of their pioneering work in designing enzymatic processes and solutions for industrial biorefineries.

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Matti Heikkilä said:

“We are honoured to be this year’s John Sime Award recipients. MetGen has collaboration written in our DNA: We always tailor the enzymatic solutions and licensed technologies to match the customer specific need. The winning technologies presented at EFIB are designed to solve value-chain-wide challenges, and they are developed in the spirit of open innovation. While the biggest thanks belong to MetGen’s team for coming up with these incredible technologies, we also owe a debt of deep gratitude to all the European collaboration partners who have shared our audacious visions and worked with us towards shared objectives. We believe, the only thing that a bioindustry revolution needs is more collaboration.”

Metgen was not the only innovative company to be reciognised at EFIB 2018. With its strong, 100% plant-based and fully biodegradable bioplastic, Plantics BV was voted PitchFest winner by the participants, in the face of strong competition from 4 other pitching companies.

Plantics BV CEO Dr Wridzer Bakker said:

“We are delighted to emerge as winners. We believe our Plantics-GX technology can become a building block for the bioeconomy, having reached the position where our biopolymer based on plants can provide an environmentally sustainable alternative for several applications at a competitive prize.”

Agnes Borg, Industrial Biotech Director at EuropaBio commented:

“EFIB remains a key forum showcasing leading innovation in industrial biotechnology and the bioeconomy, and providing answers to key challenges. We are delighted to congratulate both MetGen and Plantics on their awards and would also thank all the attendees, who together demonstrated that the drive towards building a circular bioeconomy in Europe is gathering real momentum.” 

You can find out more about EFIB here.

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