Chevron, Bunge Buy Argentine Grower of Biofuel Materials

July 10, 2023 by Dan McCue
Chevron, Bunge Buy Argentine Grower of Biofuel Materials
Camelina sativa

HOUSTON — Chevron’s Renewable Energy Group and Bunge, an agriculture trading company, have purchased an Argentine firm to help both companies meet the growing demand for lower carbon renewable feedstocks.

The company they bought, Chacraservicios SRL, was previously owned by the Italian-based Adamant Group. The terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Founded in 2003, Chacraservicios cultivates Camelina sativa, a flowering plant that at one time was cultivated all over the world to produce vegetable oil and animal feed.

Though it fell briefly out of favor after World War II as newer products came on the market, its oil-rich seeds are now back in vogue, seen as a tremendous, plant-based source of omega-3 fatty acids and natural antioxidants, and as a potential, easy-to-grow basis for aviation biofuel and biolubricants.

In regard to the latter, since 2000 a number of successful test flights have been carried out by the U.S. Navy, Continental Airlines and others using blends of jet fuel with biofuel made from Camelina sativa.

In a written statement, Natalie Merrill, senior vice president for business development with Chevron’s Renewable Energy Group, said, “Agricultural innovation is powering renewable fuels development around the world, and opportunities like this are helping Chevron expand our portfolio of affordable, reliable and lower carbon fuels.

“Together with Bunge, Chevron’s Renewable Energy Group looks forward to working with the Chacraservicios team on meal and oil processing innovations,” she added.

Fernando Candia, Bunge’s vice president for Carbon Solutions, said the addition of the new oilseed source to its portfolio is “another step towards our goal of expanding lower carbon intensity feedstocks to help meet the growing demand for renewable fuels.”

In a press release, the companies said they expect to continue to explore opportunities to increase their joint effort to develop the next generation of renewable fuels and advance a lower carbon energy future.

Dan can be reached at [email protected] and @DanMcCue

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