Camelina: the Next Big Oilseed?
The demand for oilseeds continues to rise, but it’s not driven by food consumers. Instead it’s low carbon intensity renewable diesel. Dr. Oliver Peoples at Yield10 Biosciences is commercializing camelina, which is an oilseed that can be grown as a cash cover crop in between primary crops like corn and beans.
Peoples… “If you look at what's happened in the biofuel space, mainly for renewable diesel and aviation. You know, right now we see about a 6 billion gallon demand based on infrastructure that's being built, a lot of it in California, a lot of it in the gulf, quite a bit of it in the upper Midwest. And for the first time, this is big oil that's all over this. And so what you have is you have a very large and growing disconnect between sourcing vegetable oil, particularly vegetable oil with a low carbon intensity. And this growing demand for feed stocks for these biofuels. So really, you know, in order to meet this demand, what we need is we need to be able to use land that would otherwise not be being used. And that can be done in some areas where soybean and canola don't do particularly well, Pacific Northwest or through cover cropping where you essentially integrated into the rotations with corn and beans.”
Peoples says the technology and the capacity for this new oilseed continues to expand.