As Europe produces more biofuel using hydrotreated vegetable oil, observers are speculating on how much the development will affect demand for traditional biofuel feedstock such as rapeseed. If vegetable oil-based fuel replaces some biofuels that create glycerine as a byproduct, that could have ramifications for the pharmaceutical, personal care and food industries.
Increased demand for soybean oil as a biofuel feedstock means Brazil is exporting more soybean meal and fewer whole beans. The trend is further fueled by the imminent lapse of an agricultural exemption from taxes that hit raw products harder than refined ones.
New plant-based shortening products offer improved versatility and temperature tolerances for use in baking and icings, manufacturers say. Options made from soybeans and palm oil have hit the market this year.
Researchers are working on techniques for producing synthetic meat products with 3D printing or culturing animal cells as alternatives to the extrusion methods used by current popular meat alternatives. Meanwhile, products that blend natural meat with meat substitutes are poised for a surge, and might have even greater potential for environmental and health benefits than the pure vegan versions.
Researchers in Canada have learned that a diet high in saturated fat accelerates the growth of prostate cancer by increasing the expression of genes that promote cancer growth. Meanwhile, a separate study by the Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center in Buffalo, N.Y., identified a protein that appears to inhibit the growth of prostate tumors.
A military scientist has found proteins that keep microbes from growing in fuel tanks by interfering with the way the microbes transport toxic substances through their membranes. Microbes infesting tanks can degrade fuel, especially biodiesel, which often contains fatty acid methyl esters on which microbes thrive.
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