Blue BioTech Shoalhaven Update
Since BioMarine 2015, there has been follow up on leads from USA, Norway, Ireland… Negotiations with contacts established in Portugal in 2014 are still progressing, such is the power of networking.
Specific industry outcomes from the Blue BioTech Shoalhaven group in late 2015 have included:
• The University of Wollongong and Venus Shell Systems are continuing to collaborate on the development of 3D printed seaweed based materials. Read more here (Nov 2015)
• NSW Primary Industries have negotiated a leasing outcome for 50Ha of aquaculture farming in Jervis Bay within the Shoalhaven area
• Venus Shell Systems continue to work on their PhycoPRO product range – nutritious food; improving digestive health, revolutionary skin care
• Clinical trials for human gut health were conducted by University of Wollongong in conjunction with Venus Shell Systems. Over 60 local participants were involved in this “BioBelly” trial which concluded in late December 2015, with results anticipated in Feb/Mar 2016.
The Blue BioTech Shoalhaven network is growing. Australian Food and Pharmaceutical Industries is a newly established manufacturing company located in Shoalhaven. Their first product will be natural chewing gum extracted from the genus Pistacia, as well as other trees. Interest within Blue BioTech has been created by products from this business being used as a delivery medium for other health ingredients from the marine biotechnology sector.
Looking forward to a dynamic 2016
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Representatives from Blue BioTech Shoalhaven attended the 2015 BioMarine Conference held in Wilmington, USA. Dr Pia Winberg and Mike Lewis from Venus Shell Systems and Greg Pullen, Shoalhaven City Council, were there to promote Blue BioTech and its member businesses throughout the 3 day conference.
Biofuels and agri-feeds dominated presentations and discussion at the 2014 conference. In 2015 pharmaceutical, nutraceutical and cosmetic uses were more prominent and the discussion surrounded product development and markets rather than pure research by academics. This is a pleasing outcome and supports the direction of Blue BioTech Shoalhaven.
Collaboration features heavily within the Blue BioTech agenda and they were able to report on a number of collaborative projects that have been developed in the Shoalhaven including;
• Upscaling of a commercial algae farm that it able to produce consistent batching qualities
• The use of algal extracts in 3D printing of human body parts for clinical trials
• Human trials to demonstrate the use of seaweed to promote gut health
• Clinical trials of the use of algal extracts in a topical formulation
• Approval granted for 50Ha of aquaculture leases located in the pristine waters of Jervis Bay
The format of the 2015 BioMarine conference remained unchanged and consisted of 5 streams being;
• A series of 15 min CEO interviews. Mike Lewis, Director of Venus Shell Systems participated in one such interview
• Moderated panel sessions. Video of the Blue BioTech sessions is supplied below.
• BioMarine International Cluster Association (BICA) meeting which included representatives from Canada, France, Ireland, Mozambique, Norway, Portugal, Saudi Arabia, Scotland, Spain and USA. Blue BioTech also attended as the Australian BioMarine representative.
• A series of reports from each BICA representative
The final stream consists of a series of one on one business meetings between delegates. Delegates use these meeting to investigate business linkages and partnerships. Blue BioTech representatives participated in a number of these which generated numerous leads for its member businesses.
Overall, BioMarine 2015 was a huge success for Blue BioTech Shoalhaven. Business leads were developed, international ties were strengthened and Blue BioTech once again established itself as a leader in innovation in biotechnology.
Blue BioTech Shoalhaven's BioMarine 2015 Report can be found here.
BioMarine 2015 Panel Discussion
The 6th BioMarine International Business Conference was held in Wilmington, North Carolina on the 13th and 14th of October 2015. Blue BioTech was there to promote the work of our business partners.
Dr Pia Winberg, Venus Shell Systems, was on hand to discuss "Celebrating Seaweed - the gold of the sea".
Secrets of Seaweed from Guy Fenton
Scientists and health professionals are discovering that seaweeds contain special gels that can be used for an array of medical applications, from arthritis to mental health. Guy Fenton catches up with one of Australia's leading seaweed experts to learn more about it, and how the Tasmanian biotechnology company Marinova is innovating a whole new range of health products based on these seaweed gels.
Secrets of Seaweed from Guy Fenton
Outcomes from Cascais
A delegation representing Blue BioTech Shoalhaven traveled to Portugal to the BioMarine Business Convention. Blue BioTech Shoalhaven was a sponsor of this event and established a number of biotech industry networks with potential development opportunities. This included visiting seaweed farms in Portugal and biotech medical companies that are interested in developing products from Shoalhaven sourced marine products. The Blue BioTech Shoalhaven delegation attended a number of sessions on best practice of production and emerging technologies in biomass processing from the oceans.