Anklam, Germany – Continental has won the approval of Anklam town council to set up its Taraxagum Lab to develop natural rubber derived from the Russian dandelion.
Conti advances €35m Taraxagum project with local council support
The tire manufacturer submitted a long-term proposal to the council in March. That submission, it said, had now been approved in principle.
The next steps, said Conti on 28 March, are to acquire a 30,000 m² plot of land in the Lilienthalring business park, get a building permit from the town of Anklam and erect the first building.
“We are very pleased indeed with the town council’s approval of our long-term project plans,” said Burkhardt Köller, chairman of Continental Reifen Deutschland GmbH.
“As announced in August 2016, over the next five years we intend to invest €35 million to further explore the rubber production processes,” he said.
The Anklam town council, said Köller, showed its support for the “major entrepreneurial risk” by selling the company its chosen plot of land for €1.
The company is planning to increase its investment in Taraxagum, expecting to employ 20 in its lab site in Anklam by 2021.
“We intend to enlarge the acreage in the region from 15 hectares at present to 800 hectares so as to increase crop yields to a level measured in tonnes,” said Dr. Andreas Topp, who is in charge of material and process development and industrialisation for tires at Continental..
“Assuming that we can successfully implement the next steps of the project as planned, we and the town of Anklam can both look forward to a bright future for our Taraxagum Lab Anklam,” he added.
The Taraxagum project has been led for the past few years, by Continental and its German project partners, the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IME in Münster, the Julius Kühn-Institute in Quedlinburg, and crop breeder ESKUSA, based in Parkstätten.