BioAmber Officially Opens (GALLERY)

BioAmber celebrates opening of the world's largest succinic acid plant located in Sarnia. August 6, 2015 ( Photo by Briana Carnegie)

Ontario Deputy Premier Deb Matthews was among one hundred guests at the official opening of Sarnia’s BioAmber plant on Vidal St. S. Thursday morning.

The facility is the largest succinic acid plant in the world and uses biotechnology to produce sustainable chemicals from sugar instead of petroleum.

JF Huc, CEO of Montreal based BioAmber, says production uses corn glucose shipped in from London’s agricultural suppliers.

The $141.5-million plant will use the equivalent of three million bushels of Ontario corn annually, to produce 30,000 metric tons of succinic acid.

Compared to petrochemical production processes, succinic acid production eliminates 100% of greenhouse gas emissions and consumes 65 per cent less energy.

About 300 construction jobs were created and 18 of the 60 full-time jobs have been filled by graduates of Lambton College.

Huc says they expect to be in continuous commercial operation by the end of September.

In the meantime, BioAmber is considering plans for a second plant, expected to cost $400-million, and was looking at Sarnia-Lambton and two U.S. locations as possible sites.