The objective of this study was to identify tangible market opportunities for plant cell wall degrading enzymes. The client had technology and a marketing outlet for enzymes and was seeking new applications for such enzymes. The first phase of the study reviewed potential uses of such hemicellulolytic enzymes. Opportunities were sought in food, feed, fuel, fabric and wastes. Interim analysis led to the conclusion that markets exist in all the sectors considered. However, some of these markets were judged to be more accessible and more likely to be profitable in the short term than others. The results of this initial overview were reviewed and as a result, it was agreed to focus further investigation on the opportunities in the food sector. These sectors were high volume agro-food, consumer food manufacturing and speciality food ingredient manufacturing.

A number of opportunities were identified in each sector. These included process improvements in terms of speed and cost. However, the most interesting opportunities were in the areas of consumer food manufacture, where improved enzymes would lead to cost reductions and product improvements mainly in the coffee chocolate sectors.

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