Metabolix, Inc., an advanced biomaterials company focused on sustainable solutions for the plastics industry, today provided an update on the Company's biopolymer manufacturing plans.
In the second half of 2014, Metabolix conducted a manufacturing site assessment, which included an engineering study, capital plan, operating cost estimates and discussions with the site owner, for intermediate scale biopolymer production at an existing contract manufacturing site. Taking into account the site assessment, timelines and other available information, Metabolix has decided to defer making a commitment to contract manufacturing at the site at this time.
Instead, Metabolix plans to significantly increase output of Mirel® PHA biopolymers at its contracted pilot manufacturing facilities. The initial focus of this manufacturing plan will be production of the Company's a-PHA (amorphous, low Tg rubber) biopolymer for use in ongoing development activities based on this unique PHA product. This new PHA material, together with existing inventory, is intended to support both market development and initial customer conversions as Metabolix continues working to build its biopolymers business based on PHA performance additives.
"We believe this is the right approach to biopolymer manufacturing at this time," said Joseph Shaulson, president and CEO of Metabolix. "We expect the increased output from our pilot facilities will require only a modest level of capital investment in 2015, which extends the runway provided by the financing and restructuring we completed earlier this year as compared to the intermediate scale option we have been evaluating. We also expect this approach to accelerate the availability of a-PHA material for market development. Going forward, we intend to continue evaluating and developing production expansion options for our business as we bring on commercial scale customers for Metabolix PHA biopolymers."