Global Agriculture

Casterra Announces Additional $2.2 Million of Purchase Orders to Supply Castor Seeds for New African Territories

03 July 2023, Israel: Casterra Ag Ltd. (“Casterra”), an integrated castor cultivation solution company and a subsidiary of Evogene Ltd. (“Evogene”) (Nasdaq: EVGN; TASE: EVGN), today announced additional $2.2 million of purchase orders to supply castor seeds during 2023, for new African territories. Casterra’s castor seeds, developed with Evogene’s GeneRator AI Tech Engine, will be used to grow Castor to produce oil for sustainable biofuel. Casterra’s high-yield, high-oil castor seed varieties are optimized for biofuel production to support the growing sustainable energy market.

The biodiesel market is estimated at ~$92 billion in 2021, which is about 9% of the overall global diesel market and is expected to reach ~$190 billion by 2030[1]. In current industry practice, biodiesel is based on a mix of about 93-95% fossil oil and 5-7% non-fossil oil from plants or other sources. The demand for non-fossil oil for biodiesel could increase either by growth of the biodiesel segment in the regular diesel market and/or by an increase in the percentage of non-fossil used in the biodiesel mix. Biofuels offer significant advantages over conventional petrochemical fuels, presenting a renewable and biodegradable alternative with substantially lower negative environmental impact.

Castor emerges as a standout non-fossil oil candidate due to its carbon-neutral properties, with emissions during combustion closely matching the carbon dioxide absorbed during the growth of castor plants. Furthermore, the castor plant can be cultivated on marginal lands, in semi-arid to arid conditions, and it does not compete on ground with edible crops.

Casterra, as Evogene’s subsidiary, spearheads the development of proprietary high-yield castor varieties leveraging the company’s cutting-edge computational biology technologies. By utilizing Evogene’s GeneRator AI tech engine and incorporating advanced computational AI capabilities and proprietary plant genomic databases.

“We are thrilled to receive additional significant purchase orders for our unique castor seed, which confirms our value proposition for the sustainable biofuel industry,” expressed Eyal Ronen, Chief Executive Officer of Casterra. “As we eagerly hope to secure more orders in the future, this accomplishment reinforces our ongoing commitment to delivering exceptional, eco-friendly solutions to meet the ever-growing global demand for renewable energy. After more than a decade of hard work and an investment of tens of millions of dollars in developing our unique varieties and underlying technology, we are proud that Casterra is now a trusted and reliable supplier in this growing market.”

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