Suzano-owned forest-biotechnology firm FuturaGene establishes first R&D center in China, which will help meet country's demand for sustainable fiber production, renewable energy sources

SHANGHAI , December 5, 2011 (press release) – FuturaGene, a world leader in the enhancement of yield and sustainability of woody crops for plantation forestry, biopower and biofuel markets, has established its first research and development centre in China with a team of scientists dedicated to helping the country meet its demand for sustainable fibre production and renewable energy sources. The site of the laboratory will serve as the company’s China headquarters.

China is a significant growth market for FuturaGene. The company has been operating in China through partnerships with a number of universities and research institutes for the last six years. These partnerships have strengthened and grown and the need for a strategic base in the country has become imperative.

Dr. Stanley Hirsch, Chief Executive of the FuturaGene Group and Mr. James Zhang, VP Futuragene China , hosted the opening. The ceremony was attended by representatives from Chinese academia, government and business, including the Guangxi Academy of Sciences, China Academy of Forestry, Beijing Forestry University, South China University of Technology, biotech and pulp and paper partners of Suzano and FuturaGene and diplomatic representatives from Brazil and Israel.

Stanley Hirsch, Chief Executive of FuturaGene said;

“China, with continuously growing demand for fibre and renewable energy sources provides a huge challenge and opportunity. Our forest biotech capability can provide sustainable alternatives in helping to meet these enormous demands.”

“We have worked for a number of years through public-private partnerships to develop some of these solutions in China. The establishment of our own facility will serve as the focal point for driving these partnerships in the local environment. Through this facility and a more direct presence, we can leverage the experience of FuturaGene and our parent Suzano in meeting significant industrial demands whilst helping to preserve natural resource inventories and reducing pressure on fragile ecosystems in China.”

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