News & Media

News and Media

OMAFRA representatives visit BDDC
29 July, 2015

Two representatives from the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, Stewart Skinner and Daniel Quesada, accompanied by Tyler Whale (Ontario Agri-Food Technologies) and Terry Daynard, visited BDDC facility and discussed BDDC contributions to intergrated approach to bio-based materials industry in Ontario.

Brazilian delegation visits BDDC
24 July, 2015

A Brazilian delgation with representatives from the industry and academia visited BDDC, learned about BDDC, inlcuding industry-driven projects and toured BDDC facility.

(L-R): Dr. N. Zarrinbakhsh (BDDC), Dr. M. Popov (BDDC), Mariangela Lima (Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development, Canada), Prof. Rubens Maciel Filho (Cidade Universitária Zeferino Vaz), Ms. Selma Barbosa Jaconis (BRASKEM), Ms. Mariana Pacheco Correa (OXITENO), Mr. Mateus Lopes (BRASKEM), Mr. Atul Bali (CGTech), Thomas Leung (Ministry of Economic Development, Employment and Infrastructure, Ontario), Mr. Zack Jamha (BDDC).

Prof. Misra receives most cited paper award at the 2015 ICCM conference, in Copenhagen
21 July, 2015

Professor Manjusri Misra has received “2014 Composites Part A Most Highly Cited Paper” Award. The presentation of this award was made at the 20th International Conference on Composite Materials in Copenhagen, Denmark, 19-24 July 2015.

This is a newly created award which highlights papers that have truly generated interest and awareness within the composites community. Prof. Misra’s paper "Characterization of natural fiber surfaces and natural fiber composites", published in Composites Part A, in 2008 has been selected for the 2014 most highly cited paper award. 

PhD Positions in Biological Engineering
20 July, 2015

Graduate Opportunities

There are several openings for graduate students wishing to pursue a PhD degree in the research areas listed below:

     Bioplastics and Biobased polymers

     Biocomposites (Natural Fibre Composites) and Polymer Blends

     Green Composites including recyclability, durability and biodegradability studies

     Biobased Nanocomposites and Nanoblends

     Biomass and Biomaterials Sustainability

     Value-added Biobased Materials from the Coproducts/Byproducts of Biofuel Industries

     Biodegradability (Compostability)

For entry in the PhD program in Biological Engineering (School of Engineering), candidates must hold a Masters degree in Engineering, or Science. For more information and how to apply, please see information sheet.

BDDC Positions Available - Postdoctoral Fellow
20 July, 2015

The Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre (BDDC) at the University of Guelph, seeks highly motivated researchers for Postdoctoral Fellow positions to support and advance research activities at the BDDC. Specific positionsavailable at present time are:

·   Renewable bio-carbon and carbonaceous hybrid thermoplastic composites (2 positions);
·   Rubber and bio-carbon based biocomposites (1 position);
·   Bio-based thermoset resin and their biocomposites (1 position); and
·   High performance bio-based engineering plastics ad their biocomposites (1 position).

The selected candidate will have the opportunity to work with senior scientists from different areas (materials science and engineering, chemical engineering, mechanical engineering, polymer chemistry, packaging and plant agriculture) and will have the chance to work collaboratively with industrial partners.

How to Apply

Applicants must hold a PhD degree in the field of Engineering and Science (polymer engineering/ chemistry/ material science), or a related discipline.

Please send your application package to

Each application package must contain:
- a cover letter outlining qualifications for the specific position applied and earliest date of availability, if selected;
- 2-page summary outlining your interest and motivation to work in the Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre (BDDC) – for each position applying;
- up to date CV (curriculum vitae) with contact information for three professional/academic references (with contact details); and
- 2 or 3 of your scientific publications (of your choice) in pdf format.
If applying for multiple positions, you must send separate application package for each position you are applying for.
Application deadline: Applications are welcome on an ongoing basis, up to September 31, 2015.
Expected start date:  Negotiable
Duration of the contract: one year, with possible extension for additional year.
Salary: 38,000 - 45,000 per annum, plus benefits
Number of positions available: 5

Only short-listed candidates will be contacted.

University of Guelph is an equal opportunity employer.

Industry Guest Lecture by Dr. Hamdy Kahlil - The Woodbridge Group
14 July, 2015

Guest lecture by Dr. Hamdy Kahlil, Global Technical Director for Research and Product Development, Woodbridge Foam Corporation, The Woodbridge Group, as a part of the course ENGG*6130 W 2015.

Dr. Hamdy Khalil pioneered the introduction and commercialization of renewable materials into the polyurethane chemistry used in the interior automotive parts manufacturing which is now the benchmark for the industry. Dr. Hamdy Khalil holds Adjuct Professor position at the UofG and is a member ofthe BDDC Advisory Board.

Join us for Public Lecture on Bioeconomy with: Yulin Deng and Anthony Anyia
19 June, 2015

Delegation from Brazilian Universities visits BDDC
19 June, 2015

A delegation of 20 rectors from Brazilian Universities - ABRUEM (the organization of municipal and state universities) visited BDDC facility, as apart of their visit to the University of Guelph. They were intorduced to teh research performed at BDDC, with innovative ways to utilize agricultural products into bio-based materials.

BDDC biobased materials booth at the Waterloo Uptown Farmers Market
11 June, 2015

BDDC researchers, Arturo Rodriguez and Michael Snowdon, participated in the Waterloo Uptown Farmers Market plant-themed educational station to showcase bio-based materials based on plant feedstocks to general public audience.

Michael Snowdon is a PhD graduate student.

Ontario Agri-Food Education Teacher Ambassador Training Day at BDDC
29 May, 2015

As a part of OAFE Teacher Training Day,  14 teachers visited BDDC to learn about the research and applications for bio-based materials. The group also had an oportunity to see demonstrations of equipment and some research experiments in progress.

BDDC researchers at the Auto21 final Annual Conference 2015
26 May, 2015

AUTO21 Network of Centres of Excellence is holding its final annual conference during May 26-27, 2015, in Ottawa. The conference theme, A Legacy of Collaborative Innovation, is dedicated to those in industry, academia and government who have contributed to the success of AUTO21, Canada’s automotive research program.
BDDC is one of the sponsors of this event.
BDDC researchers at the conference (L-R): Prof. Amar Mohanty,  Ehsan Behazin (PhD candidate), Emmanuel Ogunsona (PhD candidate), Dr. Yury Yuryev, Ryan Vadori (PhD candidate), Dr. Manjusri Misra

German University students visit the BDDC as a part of the study tour
25 May, 2015

 47 German University students from Nuertingen-Geislingen University and the University of Hohenheim visited BDDC facility. This joint study tour was led by Prof. Dr. Heinrich Schuele and included 3rd year BSc and 1st year MSc-students of universities Farm Management, Equine Management and Agribusiness programs.
University of Guelph is a partner in the program, which inlcudes a 10-day tour of Ontario and Manitoba. BDDC facility tour offered the students insights into the oportunitites to utilize agricultural by-products and waste residues for applications in bio-based materialas.

Alexis Wagner selected to be a Junior Team Canada member on a Global Vision’s trade mission to China
16 May, 2015

Alexis Wagner, one of the BDDC's past undergraduate researchers, will join Canada's top young leaders on a trade mission to China. She was selected to be Newfoundland’s delegate for Global Vision’s trade mission to China, this August. As a Junior Team Canada Ambassador, she will represent Canadian culture and industry and promote connections with Chinese counterparts. For more information, see press release from Global Vision.

SAVE THE DATE: "14th International Symposium on Bioplastics, Biocomposites & Biorefining (ISBBB)" May 31 - June 3, 2016 in Guelph, Ontario, Canada.
14 May, 2015

The 14th International Symposium on Bioplastics, Biocomposites & Biorefining (ISBBB): Sustainable Bioeconomy to Marketplace,  will be held on

May 31 - June 3, 2016 in Guelph, Ontario, Canada.

More information about the event and registration will be announced soon.

For any questions about the event contact event organizers at

Ontario Institute of Agrologists delegation tours BDDC
12 May, 2015

A 18-member delegation from the Ontario Institute of Agrologists visited BDDC facilities. Prof. Amar Mohanty provided an overview of BDDC activities for the uses of agricultural biomass in bio-based product applications and Dr. Nima Zarrinbakhsh provided demonstrations for some of the lab equipment used by researchers in the facility. The group was led by Paul Kloser, Senior Development Manager at OAC.

Prof. Amar Mohanty is invited keynote speaker at the Biopolymers and Bioplastics-2015 International Conference
20 April, 2015

The International Conference and Exhibition on Biopolymers and Bioplastics going to be held on August 10-12, 2015 in San Francisco, USA. The main theme of the conference is “Bioworld Innovation: Smart, Green and Environmentally Sustainable Biopolymers:

Biopolymers and Bioplastics-2015 International Conference is an attempt to explore the various ways to utilize natural resources for betterment of the future, promising a better tomorrow for the progeny and a better vision for the springing research. Biopolymers and Bioplastics-2015 is anticipated to be one the best scientific conferences in USA.

Special Industry Seminar by Mr. Paul Kalia, CEO, E. Hofmann Plastics
7 April, 2015

Mr. Paul Kalia, CEO, E. Hofmann Plastics, visited BDDC and met with researchers and trainees. Mr. Kalia presented a seminar to the group with an overview of the company, their technology, products and possibilities for applications on bio-based polymers. The trainees participated in the discussion and the networking session that followed.

BDDC at the Ag Biomass Day 2015
27 March, 2015

Ag Biomass Day 2015 featured latest biomass research discoveries and provided a thorough market update, represented by a full range of biomass related sectors.

Dr. Nima Zarrinbaksh presented the update from BDDC at the event.

Vida Poursorkhabi receives the Ken J. Braney International Award at ANTEC 2015
26 March, 2015

BDDC researchers presented their work at the ANTEC®2015 conference, March 23-25, 2015, which took place in Orlando, Florida. BDDC graduate students and post-doctoral fellows participated with 11 oral presentations and 10 poster presentations.

We are very proud to announce that Vida Poursorkhabi has received the Ken J. Braney International Award, among 37 international students who entered the graduate poster presentations. 

ANTEC® conference is produced by the Society of Plastics Engineers and is the largest, most respected and well known technical conference in the plastics industry.  For over 70 years, it has been the largest technical conference for plastics in the world. The 2015 conference featured more than 500 of technical and industrial presentations in 40 different areas of plastics. 

Eugene Enriquez, wins Second Place Award at the GES2 2015
23 March, 2015

Congratulations to Eugene Enriquez, Second Place Award winner for the poster presentation  competition with a poster entitled: “Micro-Extrusion and Injection Molding of PHBV and PPC Blends: A Characterization of Properties”.

GES2 2015 was the 3rd annual conference hosted by the Graduate Engineering Society in the School of Engineering. The conference was an opportunity for students to share their research with peers. 14 oral presentations and 12 poster presentations were exhibited at 2015 conference, in a range of engineering disciplines offered at the University of Guelph.

College Royal 2015
21 March, 2015

BDDC participated in the College Royal 2015, with the booth displaying materilas, products, and prototypes in the Crop Science Building. The event attracted a number of students as well as general public.

For full program please visit:

BDDC trainees win prizes at the University of Guelph's 19th Annual Project SOY
20 March, 2015

19th Annual Project SOY was held at the OMAFRA Conference Centre, Guelph, ON
on Friday, March 20, 2015. Three teams from BDDC won prizes in the graduate and undergraduate categories.
Winners are also posted here Project Soy Winners Named.

Graduate category 1st prize - Soy Bag project

by Rajendran Muthuraj and Oscar Valerio

Graduate category 2nd prize - Soy Sphere Inc.

by Qirui Sun, Vida Pour Sorkh Abi Sharif Abad, Eugene Enriquez and Michael Snowdon
Photo by Martin Schwalbe


Undergraduate category 1st prize - Soybond

by Shujath Khan, Michael Biancaniello, Kyle Bradfield and Aalaa Osman
Photo by Martin Schwalbe

BDDC in the The Protico - "Can a Model T idea drive us into a greener future?"
4 February, 2015

BDDC research was featured in the UofG magazine "The Portico" - The Greener Future, with Profs Mohanty and Misra featured on the front cover page.

Read more at  "Can a Model T idea drive us into a greener future?" - U of G researchers turn biomaterials into car parts, building materials and consumer products.

The Guelph Collegiate-Vocational Institute Students visit BDDC
16 December, 2014

A group of 15 students from the high shool in Guelph, the Guelph Collegiate-Vocational Institute (GCVI), visited BDDC as a component of their Biotechnology class. The group was led by their teacher Joanne Ryan. 

Grade 9 Burlington Notre Dame High School visits BDDC
4 December, 2014

A group of Notre Dame High School students from Burlington visited BDDC - a group of 39 girls, led by teacher Allan Nason, learned about the research on environmentally friendly products and research at BDDC.  

photo grade 9 student visit

photo grade 9 student visit

photo grade 9 student visit

Special tour from the Canadian Bioeconomy Conference 2014
1 December, 2014

21 members from private and public organizations visited BDDC facilities during the special tour linked to the Canadian Bioeconomy Conference in Toronto.

Canadian Bioeconomy special: Bio Industry: Do You Know About Canada's Future?
1 December, 2014

Canadian Bioeconomy Conference is taking place on December 1-3, 2014, in Toronto, ON.

A special feature Bio Industry: Do You Know About Canada's Future?Learn about Canada’s biomaterials from some of the top experts in the industry - Q&A features Prof. Amar Mohanty.

BDDC was also featured in the Bioeconomy insert in the Toronto Star, on Friday, November 28, 2014, related to the conference.

UofG Office of Research Tours BDDC facility
26 November, 2014

Staff members (16) from the University of Guelph's Office of Research, learned more about BDDC research activities and toured BDDC facilities. The group was led by Jill Rogers, Managing Director, Research Operations.


BDDC researchers at the 2014 AIChE Annual Meeting
21 November, 2014

2014 AIChE Annual Meeting, November 16-21, 2014

AMERICAN INSTITUTE OF CHEMICAL ENGINEERS Annual Meeting was held in Atlanta, Georgia, USA.

Graduate students, Nicholas Hotz and Benjamin Adams, were selected for oral presentations:

(614e) Production and Evaluation of Bioplastic Blends from Phbv, PCL, Epoxidized Natural Rubber and Lignin
Ben Adams, Manju Misra and Amar K. Mohanty

Nick's Oral presentation:
(714d) Co-Injection Moulding Bioplastics: Investigating Procedure and Performance
Nicholas Hotz, Amar K. Mohanty and Manju Misra

Prof. Mohanty and Dr. Misra chaired three sessions on biobased materials:

Biobased Materials III: Lignin-Based Materials

Biobased Materials IV: Value-Added Coproducts

Biobased Materials V: Biopolymers and Composites

UofG Board of Governors members tour BDDC
19 November, 2014

Eight members of the UofG Board of Governors learned more about the BDDC research activitites and toured the facilities. The visit was hosted by Peter Pauls, Chair Plant Agriculture Department; Amar Mohanty, BDDC Director; and Manjusri Misra, faculty and BDDC researcher.

Visit from a delegation from Henan Institute of Science and Technology, China
18 November, 2014

A group from the Henan Institute of Science and Technology, P.R. of China. visited BDDC. 10-member delegation led by Mr. Qigao Feng, Vice President was comprized of of vice deans, professors and research directors from the Henan Institute of Science and Technology. They expressed interest in bio-based materials developed by BDDC and available technologies and market for second-generation biofuels and other value-added agricultural bioproducts.

3rd Annual BIoNIB Research Meeting
11 November, 2014

The 3rd Annual BioNIB (Bio-based New Industrial Bioproducts) meeting took place at the University of Guelph Arboretum Centre on November 11, 2014, bringing together academics from the University of Guelph, the University of Waterloo, McMaster University, the University of Toronto , industry members, for a full day of research presentations and networking. Rajib Hazarika and Mahendra Thimmanagari from OMAFRA were invited speakers at the event.  BioNIB Board of Directors meeting was held in the morning.

More about BioNIB Project visit

Video released featuring highlights from the ISBBB meeting
11 November, 2014

13th International Symposium on Bioplastics, Biocomposites & Biorefining – Moving Towards a Sustainable Bioeconomy, took place during May 20 to 23, 2014 in Guelph, Ontario, Canada. 
The meeting attracted 261 participants from 31 countries across the world.
Highlights from the meeting can be viewed in a video:
Please visit for other conference updates and information.

French Avignon University delegation visits BDDC
7 November, 2014

BDDC and Department of Plant Agriculture hosted a visit by a delegation from the Avignon University.

Globe and Mail column by Profs. Amar Mohanty and Manjusri Misra
29 October, 2014

Profs. Amar Mohanty and Manjusri Misra, of U of G’s Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre (BDDC), wrote a Globe and Mail column-"Why auto makers are investing in biomaterials", discussing why the appeal of bio-based parts for vehicles is increasing. They said there are three key factors: stringent fuel economy and emissions regulations; sustainability challenges; and market access. Mohanty and Misra also discussed how products developed by the BDDC are being commercialized in a short period of time.

OMAFRA Staff's Visit to BDDC
23 October, 2014

OMAFRA staff, Wendy Beaunom  and Ziyaad Vahed from the Policy Division, visited BDDC to discuss biomaterials and biochemical use in Ontario’s economic sectors.

BDDC received $1.125 million from the federal government and private-sector partners
9 September, 2014

University of Guelph research using renewable agricultural products in new ways to replace petroleum-based materials received $1.125 million from the federal government and private-sector partners today.

The announcement was made by federal agriculture minister Gerry Ritz during an event in Leamington, Ont.

The investment from Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada through its Agri-Innovation Program will support new research at U of G’s Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre (BDDC).

Guelph professors Amar Mohanty, Department of Plant Agriculture, and Manjusri Misra, School of Engineering, are heading the University project entitled “Design and Engineering of Sustainable Agro-based Biocomposites and Bioplastics for Industrial Uses”  along with industrial partners Competitive Green Technologies, New Energy Farms and a fiber formatting Ontario Company.

BDDC scientists aim to create renewable, eco-friendly alternatives to petroleum-based products for specific industrial uses. They will look at using renewable agricultural fibre in biocomposite materials and integrating advanced production of purpose-grown agricultural fibres and other farm residues with technologies for bioplastic and biocomposite manufacturing applications.

News Release


Photo: Rick Nicholls, MPP Chatham-Kent-Essex;  Hon. Gerry Ritz, Agriculture Minister; Prof. Amar Mohanty, University of Guelph; Atul Bali, CEO, CGTech; Mike Tiessen, President, CGTech; and Jeff Watson, MP Essex.

AUTO21 AUTO INNOVATIONS magazine features Dr. Manjsuri Misra
1 September, 2014

Dr. Misra was featured in the AUTO21 AUTO INNOVATIONS magazine in the article "Helping Canada Grow its Bio-economy". The article explores the innovations currently being explored in the university of Guelph to substitute fossil-fuel based plastics in automobiles with bio-based materials. 

The Globe and Mail Features an Article on BDDC Industry Partner Club Coffee
25 August, 2014

The Globe and Mail featured a news article on August 25, entitled "Toronto firm set to shake up K-Cup coffee wars with first compostable pods" by Eric Atkins, also available here
The article describes the efforts put forth by Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre industry partner Club Coffee in its attempts to produce a fully compostable single-serve K-Cup. By collaborating with the University of Guelph's BDDC, the Keurig-compatible coffee pod's components are now made from plant-based resin and coffee chaff, a by-product of the coffee roasting process.

OMAFRA Deputy Minister Visits the BDDC
14 August, 2014

Deb Stark, Deputy Minister of the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, and other OMAFRA representatives visited the Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre on August 14. The visitors were greeted by University of Guelph's Interim Vice President of Research Prof. John Livernois, and were given an overview of the BDDC by the Centre's Director, Prof. Amar Mohanty. Ontario Agricultural College and Deparment of Plant Agriculture members, along with several industry partners, also took part in the visit and subsequent tour of the labs.

UofG Engineering Graduate Students Visit the BDDC
14 July, 2014

University of Guelph Engineering graduate students were given demonstrations of bioprocessing and characterization experiments and BDDC labs as part of a class visit for their ENGG*6130 Physical Properties of Biomaterials course.


Johan Schnürer, Pro Vice Chancellor from the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, visits the BDDC
8 July, 2014

Johan Schnürer, the Pro Vice Chancellor of the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences toured the BDDC as part of a University of Guelph visit. 

Mr. Schnürer was particularly interested in the research activities taking place at the BDDC given that he is exploring the Univeristy's interest in joining the Global Challenges Alliance.

Prof. Ajay Dalai and Prof. S. P. Chaurasia Visit the BDDC
3 July, 2014

Two esteemed professors gave guest lectures for the graduate course ENGG*6130-Physical Properties of Biomaterials, Summer 2014, a School of Engineering course taught by Dr. Manju Misra. As part of their visit, the guest speakers were given tours of the BDDC and School of Engineering labs.

Speaker 1. Dr. Ajay Kumar Dalai, Ph.D., P.Eng., FCIC, FCAE, FEIC, FAIChE, FIIChE Associate Dean, Research and Partnerships, College of Engineering & Professor and Canada Research Chair in Bioenergy and Environmentally Friendly Chemical Processing, College of Engineering, University of Saskatchewan 

Title: Conversion of agricultural crops to bio-based fuels and chemicals – Technical and Economic Challenges in Canadian Biofuel Industry

Speaker 2. Dr. S. P. Chaurasia, Professor in Chemical Engineering Department & Chairman of International Student Affairs Office MNIT Jaipur, J.L.N. Marg, Jaipur -302017 (India)

Lecture title: Enzymatic Synthesis of DHA rich Triglycerides from Fish oil and Health Aspects

University of Guelph Alumni Tour the BDDC for Alumni Day 2014
21 June, 2014

University of Guelph alumni ranging from graduating classes of 1962 to 2000 toured the BDDC as part of Alumni Day. Over 40 visitors were given demonstrations and in-depth explanations of the ongoing research activities taking place at the Centre.

Director of Regions, Outreach and Events for Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Tours the BDDC
19 June, 2014

Darell Pack, Director of Regions, Outreach and Events for Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) visited the BDDC along with other members of AAFC's Ontario regional office's communications team. The guests were given a tour by BDDC Director, Prof. Amar Mohanty, and Dr. Manju Misra.

Grain Farmers of Ontario Tour the BDDC
18 June, 2014

On June 18th the Market Development Committee meeting of the Grain Farmers of Ontario was hosted in Guelph.  As part of the meeting the committee was provided with a tour of the BDDC facility, including the processing and characterization labs.  Committee members and GFO staffs were given demonstrations and discussed the research activities taking place at the Centre.

Chinese Consul General Visits the BDDC
13 June, 2014

A Chinese delegation headed by the Chinese Consul General in Toronto visited the Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre as part of a campus tour. This group, which included the Mayor of Erin, was given descriptions of the ongoing research activities of the BDDC given its shard interest in clean environmental technology.

BDDC Researchers Attend and Present at PPS-30
8 June, 2014

Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre researchers presented their work at the 30th International Conference of the Polymer Processing Society from June 8 to 12, which took place at the Renaissance Hotel in Cleveland, Ohio. The conference featured 17 technical topics, with 6 plenary speakers, two award lectures, two honorary sessions, two memorial sessions, and 56 keynote lectures. BDDC graduate students and post-doctoral fellows gave 7 oral presentations and 3 poster presentations.

BDDC researchers pictured with Dr. Manju Misra, Professor Amar Mohanty, and Professor Richard Gross (from the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, second from the right).

High school students from Saugeen visit the BDDC
3 June, 2014

The Ontario Agricultural College hosted a campus tour for high school students from Saugeen on June 3, 2014. As part of this tour, the 25 students visited the Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre where they were explained the ongoing research activities taking place at the centre. Students visited the BDDC  labs, and were shown demonstrations of equipment.

BDDC undergraduate researcher, Alexis Wagner, awarded W.C. Winegard Medal
2 June, 2014

The W. C. Winegard Medal will be presented to BDDC undergraduate researcher Alexis Wagner at the upcoming summer convocation as a recognition for her academic achievement and commitment to the campus and Guelph overall. This medal is the University of Guelph's top undergraduate convocation award, named after former U of G president Bill Winegard. In addition to her research activities at the BDDC, Alexis, a fourth-year biological engineering student, is also a star varsity field hockey player and President’s Scholar. Other accolades are listed in this News Release.

Congratulations Alexis!

High school students tour the BDDC
29 May, 2014

Twenty-five Grade 11 students at Notre Dame High School in Burlington, were given a tour of the Bioproducts Discovery & Development Centre labs while visiting the University of Guelph campus. Students were given demonstrations of laboratory equipment and explained the increasing importance of biobased materials.

BDDC HQP awarded first place in the AUTO21 Poster Competition and Video Competition
28 May, 2014

A BDDC research team was awarded first place in the AUTO21 Highly Qualified People Poster Competition for its research on hybrid biobased composite materials for interior automotive parts applications during the 2014 AUTO21 Conference in Niagara Falls, Ontario, on May 28, 2014. PhD candidate Vidhya Nagarajan, Dr. Arturo Rodriguez, and Dr. Kunyu Zhang also took first place in the AUTO21-Stackpole Interntational HQP Video Competition for a three-minute video highlighting their research (link below).


The success of this BDDC research team was also featured in an article published by Vik Kirsch in the Guelph Mercury on June 16, 2014, entitled: 

Interest grows in plant-based auto parts based on University of Guelph research

Tanzanian delegation visits the BDDC
28 May, 2014

Tanzanian delegates visited the Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre while touring the University of Guelph. They were hosted by Guelph East Africa, an initiative that seeks to establish an institute in Tanzania to support regional research and teaching activities. Additional information can be found by visiting at Guelph.

Sanofi BioGENEius Challenge high school students tour the BDDC
1 May, 2014

High school students participating in the Sanofi BioGENEius Challenge Canada visited the Bioproducts Discovery & Development Centre as part of this event. This competition aims to: 

"raise awareness among students, educators and the public about the emerging science of biotechnology and its applications in health care, agriculture and the environment."

Members of the Consulate General of the Kingdom of the Netherlands visit the BDDC
29 April, 2014

Members of the Consulate General of the Kingdom of the Netherlands were given a tour of the Bioproducts Discovery & Development Centre by the director, Professor Amar Mohanty, while visiting the city of Guelph. These guests included the Consular General and members of the Economic Affairs department of the consulate. 

High school students tour the BDDC as part of the Careers in Agriculture event
25 April, 2014

As part of a Careers in Agriculture event hosted by the Ontario Agriculture College and the Career Education Council, high school students visited the Bioproducts Discovery & Development Centre to learn about the career opportunities in the Agriculture Sector in biomaterials. While touring the centre, students were given descriptions of the equipment used to process and characterize plastics and composites. They were also given demonstrations of tests done to measure mechanical properties of samples.

Join us for the 13th International Symposium on Bioplastics, Biocomposites & Biorefining
11 April, 2014

Prof. Amar Mohanty has taken on the responsibility of organizing the 13th International Symposium on Bioplastics, Biocomposites & Biorefining – Moving towards a Sustainable Bioeconomy, which will take place May 19 to 24, 2014 in Guelph, Ontario, Canada. This is a continuation of the International Conference on Biocomposites, which takes place in the USA and Canada in alternating years. We are excited to announce that the scope of the conference has been broadened to include ongoing research activities and developments in the areas of bioplastics and biorefining.

Please visit often for updates on conference information and exciting developments, as well as to register for ISBBB 2014. The ISBBB 2014 Technical Program is also available.

For meeting highlights, please see the video feature:

BDDC Students Participate in Project SOY 2014
21 March, 2014

This year's Project SOY (Soybean Opportunities for Youth) took place in Guelph, with 16 projects from 26 University of Guelph students. Alexis Wagner was awarded first prize in the undergraduate category for her project on nanofibre wound dressing SojaSkin. Vida Poursorkhabi and Ghodsieh Mashouf took home second place in the graduate category for their energy harvesting foam product, Soy PZT Inc.

First prize winner Alexis Wagner showcases SojaSkin.

Second place winners Vida and Ghoshieh display Soy PZT Inc.

BDDC Researchers Participate in FarmSmart Agricultural Conference
18 January, 2014

As part of the FarmSmart Agricultural Conference taking place at the University of Guelph on Saturday, January 18th, 2014, BDDC researchers gave tours of the newly expanded research facilities to grade school and high school students. Participants were given opportunities to handle polymers and fibres, and we also given equipment demonstrations.

Professor Mohanty gives a seminar for the Biorefining Conversions Network
13 January, 2014

Professor Amar Mohanty gave a seminar for the University of Alberta's Biorefining Conversions Network January 13, 2014. Dr. Mohanty's presentation entitled "Advanced Biorefinery for Innovation in Green and Sustainable Manufacturing" gave an overview of ongoing research and recent developments in the use of distillers' grains, lignin, crude glycerol and bio-char in biobased materials for sustainable manufacturing.

For more information on University of Alberta's Biorefining Conversions Network, please visit

Professor Amar Mohanty gives Key Note Address
6 December, 2013

Professor Amar Mohanty gave a Key Note Address at the International Conference on Global Challenges and Prospects of Jute and Allied Fibres. This conference was organized by the Indian Jute Industries' Research Association (IJIRA) with the National Jute Board, and held at The Oberoi Grand in Kolkata, India, December 4-6, 2013.

Professor Mohanty's presentation, entitled: "Natural Fibre Reinforced Composites: Recent Development in Sustainable Manufacturing" gave an overview of the ongoing research and achievements of the Bioproducts Discovery & Development Centre.

BDDC Researchers Present at the Bioeconomy Research Highlights Day 2013
27 November, 2013

The Ontario Ministry of Agriculture and Food, and Ministry of Rural Affairs hosted a Bioeconomy Research Highlights Day November 27, 2013 at the Hanlon Convention Centre in Guelph. The scope of this meeting was to discuss ongoing research and progress in the development of Ontario's bioeconomy by bringing together representatives and researchers from universities, government and industry.

Professor Amar Mohanty gave an overview of research activities taking place at the Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre (BDDC), and participated in a panel discussing the "Challenges of Moving Research into Action". Seven graduate students participated in the poster presentations, with the first place award going to PhD candidate Vidhya Nagarajan for her research on overcoming property trade-offs in polylactic acid biocomposites.

BDDC Researchers Attend the Second Annual BioNib Meeting
22 November, 2013

BDDC researchers attended the second annual BioNib (Bio-based New industrial bioproducts) meeting on November 22, 2013 at the University of Guelph Arboretum Centre, bringing together academics from the University of Guelph, the University of Waterloo, McMaster University and the University of Toronto, in addition to industry members, for a full day of networking, research presentations and an industry panel discussion.

BDDC Phase 2 Grand Opening
15 November, 2013

The BDDC Phase 2 expansion, officially named the BMO Bioproducts Innovation Extension, opened today, November 15, 2013. This $4.25-million dollar expansion was funded by BMO Financial Group, the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario, and the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture and Food. It was also generously supported by William (Bill) Harrison (OAC class of '62), the Agricultural Adaptation Council, and OAC classes of 1962 and 1961.

For more information, visit the U of G website at:

and Go Ever Green article at:

BMO Makes a $1.25 Million Gift to the Bioproducts Discovery & Development Centre
23 October, 2013

The Bioproducst Discovery & Development Centre is the recipient of a $1.25 million donation from BMO Financial Group. This investment, made through the University of Guelph's BetterPlanet Project, will help the Centre expand its research and commercialization facilities.

BMO has a deep relationship with the agricultural community, and this donation will help solidify the University of Guelph as a major centre for agricultural research, in Ontario and across the country.”  ~ Susan Brown, Senior Vice President, Ontario Regional Division, BMO Bank of Montreal

For more information, please visit: and

Professor Amar Mohanty: Featured Speaker at the 63rd Canadian Chemical Engineering Conference
21 October, 2013

Professor Amar Mohanty was a featured speaker in the Frontiers in Chemical Engineering Lecture Series, focusing on Developments of Renewable Energy, as part of the 63rd Canadian Chemical Engineering Conference, held October 20-23 in Fredericton, New Brunswick. This Canadian Society for Chemical Engineering meeting focussed on "Resources, Environment and Energy".

Professor Mohanty gave a presentation on green and sustainable manufacturing utilizing co-products from biomass-based renewable energy industries. Presents the BDDC in its Voices of Canada's Bioeconomy
21 October, 2013 presents ongoing research activities taking place at the Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre (BDDC) in its Voices of Canada's Bioeconomy "Bioproducts - Wave of the Future". This short video gives an inside look at researchers working in the BDDC under the supervision of Professors Amar Mohanty and Manju Misra.

Profs Featured by CFI
27 September, 2013

The story appears in CFI’s online newsletter Research Action. It looks at how the company Competitive Green Technologies (CGTech) is working with farmers to produce a grass that can be used to make biomaterial for manufacturing green consumer goods such as flowerpots and storage bins.

Professor Amar Mohanty Gives Plenary Lecture at BEPS 2013
20 September, 2013

Professor Amar Mohanty gave a plenary lecture at the 21st Bio-Environmental Polymer Society Annual Meeting (BEPS), Working to create a sustainable future, which was held September 18-20 at the University of Warwick in the United Kingdom. This BEPS conference brought together government, academic and industry to highlight the latest research in "synthetic, renewable and natural degradable polymers, nano-, micro- and macro-composites."

Professor Mohanty's lecture focused on the recent developments in sustainable manufacturing of perennial grass (i.e. switchgrass and miscanthus)-based biocomposites.

BDDC Undergraduate Researcher Wins 1st Prize at the Automotive Conference, Michigan, USA
13 September, 2013

Five BDDC undergraduate summer students and two BDDC graduate students attended the Society of Plastics Engineers 13th Annual Automotive Composites Conference & Exhibition in Novi, Michigan from September 11-13, 2013.

In addition to participating in the 6th annual ACCE Student Poster Competition, the BDDC researchers had the opportunity to network with international industries and learn from fellow researchers.

Congratulations to Alexis Wagner for receiving honorable mention as the Undergraduate Poster Presentation winner for her poster entitled “Novel Porous Electrospun Fibers from Blends of Poly(L-lactic acid)/Poly(3-hydroxybutyrate-co-3-hydroxyvalerate) for Advanced Air Filters in Automotives”.


Alexis Wagner, first place winner for Undergraduate Poster Presentation.

BDDC Researchers: From the top left - Eugene Enriquez, Michael Snowdon and Makoto Schreiber. 

From the bottom left - Andrew Anstey, Matthew Smyth and Matthew Zaverl.

BDDC Trainees Participate in the 2013 CPES Undergraduate Poster Session
7 August, 2013

The 2013 College of Physical and Engineering Sciences (CPES) Undergraduate Poster Session took place on Wednesday, August 7th, in the Science Complex Atrium. 

Eight BDDC undergraduate summer students participated in the CPES Undergraduate Poster Session hosted by the Department of Physics and the Department of Chemistry, organized by Phil Landry and Lilly Uyen Ho.

Congratulations to Sarah Taylor, Third Prize Best Overall Poster Presentation winner for her poster entitled “Hybrid Composites from PLA and PBAT Bioplastic-Blends and Lignin: Thermo-Mechanical Characterization”.

BDDC Undergraduate Student Researchers: (from the left, back row) Makoto Schreiber, Andrew Anstey, Nelson Mendez, Michelle Mak, Matthew Smyth, Christopher Pond (front row) Sarah Taylor, Eugene Enriquez

Sarah Taylor, third place prize winner for Best Overall Poster Presentation

Ontario's international trade team tours the BDDC on June 26, 2013
26 June, 2013

Researchers from the Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre (BDDC) gave a tour its facility to 28 representatives from the Ontario Ministry of Economic Development, Trade and Employment as part of a city-wide visit. Economic development officers from China, England, France, Germany, India, Japan, Mexico and the USA work to bring together Ontario and foreign investors were impressed with the tour of the BDDC. The international representatives were introduced to the Centre's ongoing activities, and interacted with researchers giving demonstrations of the various types of equipments used to process and test bio-based materials.

Further information can be found at:

BDDC hosts an OMAF and MRA - UofG KTT Bioeconomy Seminar – June 5 2013
5 June, 2013

OMAF and MRA - UofG KTT Bioeconomy Seminar

The Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre (BDDC) and Professor Amar Mohanty hosted a public Bioeconomy Seminar as part of the OMAF and MRA-UofG KTT program on June 5th, 2013 at Cutten Fields in Guelph, Ontario. Three world renowned speakers from the United Kingdom, Germany and the United States shared their international perspective for a sustainable bioeconomy by highlighting current research and development in the areas of bioproducts, biofuels and bioenergy.

The first speaker was Dr. John Williams, the Head of Materials for Energy & Industry for The National Non-Food Crops Centre in the United Kingdom. His presentation summarized the key role of biomaterials in Europe’s strive for a low carbon economy by combining policy delivery, market analysis, strategic thinking and technology evaluation.


The second speaker was Dr. Manfred Kircher, Chairman of the Advisory Board for Cluster Industrial Biotechnology CLIB2021 in Germany, who gave an overview of the commercial and technical challenges of establishing value chains in the bioeconomy by describing the industrial drivers of sustainability, innovation and feedstock resources. Dr. Kircher also compared the logistics of fossil vs bio-based value chains and emphasized the importance of small and medium enterprises in the bioeconomy.


The third speaker Dr. Robert Fireovid, the National Program Leader for the Biobased Products for Industrial Applications, United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Agricultural Research Service, gave insight into the ongoing research taking place at USDA-supported laboratories. Dr. Fireovid described exciting new developments in bio-based products and materials, stressing the importance of industry support for increased innovation.


A record of over 100 participants from academia, industry as well as federal and provincial government organizations participated in the seminar. The participants had the opportunity to interact with the speakers and contributed to an engaging roundtable discussion. This bioeconomy seminar received very positive feedback from audience members. In particular, Urs Eggimann, vice-president of the Ontario Biomass Producers Co-op explained that, "With the quality of speakers Amar manages to bring on, there is an opportunity for everyone to acquire new industry knowledge.


Picture taken at the biocomposite footbridge made of wood fibre and polymer at Cutten Fields. (From the left: Alan Lyons, Amar Mohanty, Mohini Sain, Manju Misra, John Williams, Manfred Kircher, Khurshid Sahara, Rachel Campbell Murdy, Frank Maine, Robert Fireovid, Atul Bali, Steve De Brabandere)  

Links to Presentations:

Dr. John Williams

Dr. Manfred Kircher

Dr. Robert Fireovid

BDDC representatives attend the Ontario Centres of Excellence Discovery in Toronto, Ontario
28 May, 2013

Three BDDC researchers, Dr. Rachel Campbell Murdy, Dr. Arturo Rodriguez and Dr. Mohamed Abdelwahab, along with representatives from the University of Guelph Catalyst Centre and OMAF and MRA, attended this year's Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE) Discovery on May 27 and 28, 2013 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. OCE Discovery is the country's leading innovation-to-commercialization conference, bringing together industry, investors, entrepreneurs and researchers to showcase Ontario's leading innovators. BDDC's display was set-up with the OMAF and MRA booth to highlight their continuing partnership. Rachel, Arturo and Mohamed interacted with fellow researchers, entrepreneurs and students who were drawn to the display and interested in ongoing BDDC activities.

 Further information for OCE Discovery 2013 can be found at:

BDDC booth at AUTO21 Annual Conference, Toronto, Ontario
24 May, 2013

A group of BDDC researchers along with Dr. Amar Mohanty and Dr. Manju Misra participated in the AUTO21 annual conference this year held at Westin Harbour Castle, Toronto. AUTO21 is Canada’s automotive research program which highlights the economic and automotive outlooks and provides knowledge, technology and HQPs required for the success of automotive industry.  BDDC’s display booth was one of a kind among the exhibitors and the booth effectively displayed the research work being conducted at the centre through descriptive videos, raw materials and product prototypes. Our HQPs Kunyu Zhang, Nima  Zarrinbakhsh, Vida Poursorkabhi, Rajendran Muthuraj, Vidhya Nagarajan, Ryan Vadori and Matthew Zaverl were engaged in networking and explaining the BDDC’s research to fellow HQPs who took keen interest in learning about the work.  Ryan and Matthew participated in the video and poster competitions conducted for student researchers. The video is available at:

Further information for AUTO21 available at:

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne visits the BDDC on April 22, 2013
22 April, 2013

Plant Agriculture's Bioproducts Discovery & Development Centre (BDDC) was graced with a visit from Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne, who also serves as agriculture minister. Premier Wynne and Minister of Education Liz Sandals, MPP for Guelph-Wellington, were greeted by Kevin Hall, U of G’s vice-president (research), and Rich Moccia, associate vice-president (research and strategic partnerships, as well as other faculty members of the Department of Plant Agriculture including BDDC director Amar Mohanty. Premier Wynne interacted with BDDC staff and students, showing a keen interest in research and activities taking place at the Centre. Further information can be found at the following links:

University of Guelph is Canada's No. #1 most inventive university according to survey by the Impact Group.
10 April, 2013
University of Guelph ranks No. 1 both in the number of inventions per faculty and in the number of inventions in proportion to research funding.

Guelph- The Front and Centre as Canada's Bio-Hub
9 April, 2013
Bioproducts Discovery & Development Centre (BDDC) and the Biodiversity Institute of Ontario (BIO) at UoG have made Guelph a Bio-Hub of Canada. For further details, click the following link and browse the publication "Perspective Guelph 2013 issue- page#6."

The Honourable Reza Moridi, Minister of Research and Innovation, visits the BDDC
3 April, 2013

The Minister of Research and Innovation, the Honourable Dr. Reza Moridi visited the Bioproducts Discovery & Development Centre (BDDC) on the morning of April 3, 2013, accompanied by Dr. Gord Surgeoner, President of Ontario Agri-Food Technologies, and Dr. Robert Gordon, Dean of Guelph’s Ontario Agricultural College. Dr. Surgeoner and Dr. Mohanty gave brief presentations of the history of the BDDC, showcasing a variety of bio-based products, from Bio-Bins to door panel linings, developed at the Centre. During a guided tour of the processing facility, Dr. Mohanty explained the uses of the research equipment and provided demonstrations of the materials processed by the Centre with the assistance of BDDC researchers. The Minister showed a keen interest in the facility and the ongoing research work at the BDDC, interacting with graduate students and staff.

For further details of honourable minister's visit to Univesrity of Guelph, please click the following link.

A group of Professors and faculties from various universities of Iraq visited BDDC:
1 April, 2013

Professors and Doctors from various universities of Iraq such as University of Mosul, University of Anbar, University of Tikrit and University of Baghdad visited Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre on 1 st April 2013. The group was given an intensive tour of BDDC by Dr. Misra and Prof. Mohanty and took very keen interest in different ongoing BDDC projects. They appreciated state of the art facilities at Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre and its achievement in the field of Biobased materials.

BDDC took part in College Royal 2013
18 March, 2013

The University of Guelph's Annual College Royal was held on the weekend of March 16th and 17th, 2013. The event attracted thousands of visitors for a campus-wide open house. BDDC members participated in the event, conducted tours of the facility and presented a display booth within the Plant Agriculture Department exhibit, where volunteers showcased BDDC activities to parents, prospective students and other visitors. Over 80 visitors visited the booth and interacted with the BDDC members.

Professor Amar K. Mohanty: Keynote speaker at ISGMA 2013, June 25 to 29, 2013 - Hawaii, USA.
7 March, 2013
Prof. Amar K. Mohanty will be a distinguished keynote speaker at the International Symposium on Green Manufacturing and Applications (ISGMA) 2013 between June 25 and June 29, 2013 at the Sheraton Waikiki Hotel, Honolulu, Ohau, Hawaii, USA. For further details please click the following link:

HQP (Highly Qualified Personnel) from BDDC present at the Green Rural Opportunities Summit and Exhibition & Canadian Biogas Conference and Exhibition
5 March, 2013

Highly qualified personnel (HQP) from bioproduct discovery and development centre (BDDC), University of Guelph, shared some of the outcomes of their research activities with participants of the Green Rural Opportunities and Canadian Biogas Conference and Exhibition ( The event took place on March 4-6, 2012, in London Convention Centre, London, Ontario, Canada, and people from different areas such as academia, industry and farming community got together to share their knowledge and expertise. HQPs from BDDC including Oscar Valerio, Tessa Horvath, Mathew Smyth, Andrew Anstey, Rajendran Muthuraj, Mathew Zaverl, Yin Li and Nima Zarrinbakhsh presented their posters and demonstration samples on March 4, at the booth of Ministry of Agriculture and Food, and Ministry of Rural Affairs.

Prof. Amar K. Mohanty: Keynote speaker at the 1st International Conference on Natural Fibers, June 9 to 11, 2013 in Guimarães (Portugal).
11 February, 2013
The University of Minho is organizing the 1st International Conference on Natural Fibers – Sustainable Materials for Advanced Applications, which will be held in Guimarães, Portugal, from June 9 to 11, 2013. Prof. Amar K. Mohanty will be a keynote speaker at the conference. For further details please click the following link:

Bioproducts Offer Greener Alternatives: Applications include car parts and building materials.
7 February, 2013
There has been significant development in finding greener alternatives in the bioproducts field at the University of Guelph. A University researcher, Nicole Pinto, draws out vimentin – a human intermediate filament protein – from bacteria, which she hopes could be used as the building blocks for future biodegradable textiles. For further details please see the following link:

Kenyan High commissioner, His Excellence Mr. Simon Nabukwesi, visited BDDC
21 November, 2012

Kenyan High Commissioner to Canada, H.E. Mr. Simon Nabukwesi, and First Counsellor, Mr. Mohamed Adan visited the Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre (BDDC) on Nov 21st, 2012 to see the research taking place in Canada with respect to different agricultural crops. During the guided tour, the distinguished guests visited different parts of the Bioproducts Centre where Dr. Manjusri Misra informed them of the ongoing research work at the Centre.  

The High Commissioner was particularly impressed by the Centre’s ability to have world-class laboratory facilities. His Excellency, Mr. Simon Nabukwesi applauded the research work in the bioproducts field and also showed a keen interest in different bio-based products made of bioplastics and biomass at the BDDC research labs. His Excellency also emphasized the need and significance of shearing fruits as potential feedstocks for bioproducts to resolve current economic and environmental challenges facing Kenya. 

Prospective students showed keen interest in BDDC activities on Science & Engineering Day:
18 November, 2012

Prospective students showed keen interest in BDDC activities on Science & Engineering Day:

Prospective high school students and their families were invited for a full day program to experience science and engineering at the University of Guelph on Sunday, November 18, 2012 between 10:00 am to 1:00pm.
On this occasion, Bioproducts Discovery & Development Centre researchers and students displayed their work in the Crop Science and Bovey buildings as well as the engineering department. Numbers of prospective students and their parents visited these information stalls and asked many career related questions to current researchers.

The day was structured with prospective students’ interests in mind. Students and parents also had the opportunity to participate in a campus walking tour, lab and research facility tours, in addition to meeting with academic advisors, faculty members, students and representatives from Admission Services and Student Services.

Bioproducts Discovery & Development Centre Receives Federal Government Grant of $2 Million
16 November, 2012

November 16, 2012: The Federal Government annouced a $2 million grant to the Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre today. The funding from the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario) will be used to purchase equipment and to expand the Centre. BDDC researchers turn plant materials into resins, polymers and tough fibres to make biobased plastics and bioproducts.

BDDC director Amar Mohanty, a professor in the Department of Plant Agriculture and School of Engineering and holder of the Premier’s Research Chair in Biomaterials and Transportation, called the funding a “certificate of achievement for what we are doing.”

The funding was announced in Guelph today by the Hon. Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development and Regional Minister for Southwestern Ontario, on behalf of the Hon. Gary Goodyear, Minister of State (Science and Technology).

Finley said the money will help “ensure that researchers have the tools they need to develop and assess new bio-based products that have tremendous commercial applications” and will help provide new jobs.

U of G president Alastair Summerlee added: “This is an investment in the future. It will allow us to expand and enhance the BDDC, where scientists from across the disciplines are working together on viable solutions to some of today’s most pressing problems. They are finding new uses for agricultural products, creating green alternatives and making Canada a world leader in the field.”

The Centre opened in October 2008. Researchers study ways to use soy, wheat, corn and other crops to make everything from car parts and furniture to fuel. They also investigate new crops for use in composite materials. They hope planted-based materials will help reduce our dependency on petroleum-based products.

Dr. Rob Gordon, dean of Guelph’s Ontario Agricultural College, said the BDDC supports an important and evolving role for agriculture. “It’s a catalyst for innovative green products that will ultimately enhance the value of Ontario’s agriculture sector. It also provides a training environment that will help to further position Ontario as a global leader in bioproducts.”

The BDDC is directed by Amar Mohanty, a professor in U of G’s Department of Plant Agriculture and School of Engineering and holder of the Premier’s Research Chair in Biomaterials and Transportation.

“Bioproducts are the wave of the future,” Mohanty said. “We sincerely thank FedDev Ontario for this timely contribution that will accelerate the creation of innovative green biomaterials-based solutions to create a sustainable competitive advantage for businesses in our province and beyond in the fast-growing bioeconomy.”

Created in 2009 under Canada’s Economic Action Plan, FedDev Ontario is intended to help businesses and communities in Southern Ontario to compete globally.

OMAFRA - UofG KTT Bioeconomy Seminar
4 October, 2012


BDDC-OMAFRA-KTT-UofG Bioeconomy Seminar – 04 October 2012

Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre (BDDC) has organized a bioeconomy seminar as part of BDDC-OMAFRA-KTT-UofG program on October 4th, 2012 at OVC Lifetime Learning Centre, University of Guelph. Three world renowned speakers have given lectures on the key area of sustainable bioeconomy, challenges in marketing bioplastics, and sustainability of agriculture in Canada.

The seminar was hosted by Prof. Amar Mohanty, Director of Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre. It started at 2 p.m. after a short introduction about the speakers by Prof. Mohanty and finished at 7 p.m. after a networking reception. 

The first speaker was Prof. David B. Layzell, Executive Director of Institute for Sustainable Energy, Environment & Economy (ISEEE) from the University of Calgary. His presentation described how the fossil fuel greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions are forcing climate change and how biological systems could provide a 'green' energy alternative. He also gave an overview of the Canadian energy system, including how it has changed over the past 30 years and where it is heading, presenting the challenges and opportunities for the transformation to a 'made-in-Canada' sustainable bioeconomy.

The second speaker was Mr. Steve Mojo, Executive Director of Biodegradable Products Institute, New York, USA. In his talk he discussed the increasing popularity of bioplastics over the last 10 years, giving simple demonstrations on the making of bioplastics, the growth of polylactic acid and the advent of biopolyethylene. His presentation covered the key issues and questions facing bioplastics manufacturers and users as they develop and introduce applications of these new bioplastics.

The third speaker Mr. Don O'Connor, President of S&T Squared Consultants, Delta, British Columbia, Canada, presented the sustainability of agriculture around the world. He discussed the interest in agriculture driven by government regulations, increased trade (especially in biofuels and biofuel feedstocks), consumer interest and the concerns about food vs. fuel. He also discussed whether the indirect land use change is real or exaggerated, the current debate for bio-chemicals and bio-materials, and how the Canadian practices stack up with producers from around the world.

About 70 participants from various fields; students, professors, industrialists and staff from OMAFRA participated in the seminar. The participants had the opportunity to interact with the speakers and ask for clarifications during the presentations. The seminar attendees obtained a unique advantage of interacting personally with speakers and their colleagues during the networking reception organized after the seminar. The participants were very appreciative and thankful for this bioeconomy seminar offered as part of the BDDC-OMAFRA-UofG-KTT program, with free parking arrangement and the networking lunch after the seminar. The webinar arranged for the presentations also helped others take part in the seminar indirectly.


Ontario biomass tour of BDDC
21 September, 2012

Students and representatives from farm producers, government and industry who are looking at new opportunities offered by the emerging bioeconomy visited the BDDC on September 21, 2012.

BDDC booth at Canada’s Outdoor Farm Show in Woodstock, Ontario
12 September, 2012

BDDC participated in Canada’s premier outdoor agricultural showcase which highlights the most innovative and technologically advanced agricultural products and services available to farmers. In the display, BDDC exhibited and explained the bioproducts developed from the agricultural residues and bioplastics. 


Undergraduate Summer Research Presentations
17 August, 2012

The Undergraduate Researchers that have been working in the BDDC over the summer semester have presented their research projects in a mini-seminar to the BDDC group. Amazing work was accomplished this summer, with congratulations to Makoto, Andrew, Alexis, Eugene, Lauren, and Satvinder for their hard work and committment.

The seminar was hosted by Dr. Mohanty and Dr. Misra, where they presented each undergraduate student with a gift and a certificate of appreciation.


BDDC trainees at the CPES Undergraduate Poster Session
15 August, 2012

The CPES Undergraduate Poster Session took place on Wednesday, August 15th, in the Science Complex Atrium. 

Six BDDC undergraduate summer students participated in the CPES Undergraduate Poster Session hosted by the Department of Physics and the Department of Chemistry, organized by Robert Moscaritolo and Moez Valliani.

Congratulations to Alexis Wagner, First Prize winner for her poster entitled “Optimization of electrospun poly(lactic acid)/poly(3-hydroxybutyrate-co-3-hydroxyvalerate) blend nanofibers for flexible electronics”.

  Poster session

Alexis Wagner

Pendulum swings to market-driven research - Guelph Mercury
8 July, 2012

Professor Amar Mohanty was interviewed by a local paper, Guelph Mercury, about research funding "Pendulum swings to market-driven research".

BDDC in the news: "Future is seen — wrapped in bioplastics"
21 June, 2012

Dr. Amar K. Mohanty gave the keynote address at the 18th International Association of Packaging Research Institutes conference. Seen as a promoter of the green economy, his message from the presentation was featured in "Future is seen — wrapped in bioplastics", by The Tribune, San Luis ObispoCounty, California.


Read more here:

OMAFRA-KTT Bio-Economy & BDDC Seminar
20 June, 2012

“Building the Fibre Industry:  Integrating Business and Technical Requirements Challenges” by Trevor Kloeck (Business Development Manager, Bio-Industrial Development Branch, Alberta Ministry of Agriculture & Rural Development) and Wade Chute (Program Leader - Fibre Processing at Alberta Innovates - Technology Futures).

View Seminar Announcement 

Alumni weekend
15 June, 2012

During the alumni weekend, over 70 visitors including MAC'62 class (led by Carol Baxter) and OAC'62 class (led by Peter Hannam) met with Prof. Amar Mohanty and Dr. Manju Misra. Groups visited BDDC and learned more about projects on bio-based materials.

MAC'62 class

OAC'62 class

Open tour

Visit from the Department of Environmental Technology of Wageningen University, Netherlands
8 June, 2012

A group from the Department of Environmental Technology of Wageningen University, Netherlands visited BDDC facilities. About 20 PhD students and staff members visited the University of Guelph with an interest in innovation and technology for sustainable evironmental solutions.

AUTO21 funds new BDDC project
30 May, 2012

The Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State (Science and Technology) announced today new funding at the AUTO21 conference in Montreal, Quebec. A project led by Prof. Amar Mohanty and Prof. Mohini Sain (University of Toronto) entitled “Hybrid Biocomposites for Automotive Applications” has received $1 million over two years.

More on this story.

AUTO21 Annual Conference
29 May, 2012

BDDC was a sponsor of the AUTO21 Annual Conference, where approximately 400 delegates from Canada's research community and automotive sector attended and learned more about the Network's projects.

AUTO21 Annual Conference
May 29 – 31, 2012
Le Centre Sheraton
Montreal, Quebec

Delegation from the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences visits BDDC
17 May, 2012

A group of 24 delegates from the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences visited BDDC. The group was led by Dr. Sun Rifei, Director General, Prof. Institute of Vegetables and Flowers, CAAS.

International Business Development Representatives visit BDDC
10 May, 2012

Representatives from the Ontario Ministry of Economic Development and Innovation, Ontario Ministry of Economic Development and Trade, international investment representatives from UK, South Korea, Sweden, Italy and Germany.

12th International Conference on Biocomposites
6 May, 2012

12th International Conference on Biocomposites

"Transition to Green Materials"

May 6-10, 2012

Marriott Niagara Falls Gateway on the Falls, Niagara, Ontario

High School tour of BDDC, Reach Ahead Day
3 May, 2012

Nine high school students and two teachers visited BDDC as a part of the OAC Reach Ahead Day events.

BDDC booth at the Agriculture, Horticulture and Landscape and Forestry SHSM Regional Workshop
30 April, 2012

Ontario Ministry of Education, the University of Guelph and Upper Grand District School Board co-hosted the regional SHSM sector meeting in Agriculture, Horticulture and Landscape and Forestry teachers. BDDC was represented by a bioproducts booth at the event.

BDDC host a tour for the HOSTA meeting at UofG
20 April, 2012

About 20 Horticulture Ontario Secondary Teachers Association (HOSTA) members visited BDDC.

Careers in Agriculture Workshop
19 April, 2012

As a part of the Career Education Council's workshop on the U of G Campus, BDDC hosted a Bioproducts tour of the facilities for 20 high school students from local schools.

Ron Buckhalt Public Seminar - "Biopreferred: Creating New Markets for Biobased Products"
17 April, 2012

Part of OMAFRA-UofG KTT Bioeconomy Seminars

"Biopreferred: Creating New Markets for Biobased Products"
Speaker: Ron Buckhalt
Manager, BioPreferred® program, USDA/Agricultural Research Service, Washington, DC
When: Tuesday, April 17, 2012
Time:   6 pm, followed by Reception at 7 pm
Location: OVC Lifetime Learning Centre, Rm1714, University of Guelph

We will hear about the steps the U.S. government is taking to support the development of the bioeconomy.  The BioPreferred program is a mandatory Federal procurement program put in place 10 years ago to help pull the market for biobased products by harnessing the purchasing power of the Federal government by mandating the purchase of products designated by USDA. The program now also has a USDA Certified Biobased Product label which is beginning to appear in retail outlets.  Additionally, the Administration is expected to announce a new Federal research thrust to support the bioeconomy.

Hosted by Prof. Amar Mohanty, Director of Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre
View Seminar Announcement

Seminar Recording

Huazhong Agricultural University Visit
17 April, 2012

As a part of the UofG visit, five delegates from Huazhong Agricultural University, China, visited the BDDC facility. The tour was led by Peter Pauls, Chair of the Department of Plant Agriculture.

Plant Agriculture Reach Ahead Day
17 April, 2012

BDDC hosted visit for about 40 high school students (grade 11), as a part of the Plant Agriculture Reach Ahead Day.

BDDC at the Green Living Show 2012
13 April, 2012

BDDC is one of the invited exhibitors at the Green Living Show 2012, in Toronto.

April 13-15, 2012, Direct Energy Centre, Exhibition Place, Toronto, ON.

CIBC guests visit BDDC facility
30 March, 2012

Hosted by Rene Van Acker (OAC Associate Dean, External Relations) and Peter McGowan (OAC BSc(Agr), CME Advisory Board, Board of Governors  and Campaign Cabinet), a group of CIBC bankers learned about research at the BDDC facility.

College Royal BDDC tours
17 March, 2012

BDDC participated in this year's College Royal, March 17-18, 2012 with the BDDC tours of the facility and a display booth within the Plant Agriculture Department exhibit.


Brenda Platt - Public Seminar "Sustainable Biomaterials: Criteria, Benefits, Challenges & Market-Based Tools"
13 March, 2012

As a part of OMAFRA-UofG KTT Bioeconomy Seminars, the first speaker in the series will be Brenda Platt, Co-Chair, Sustainable Biomaterials Collaborative, Institute for Local Self-Reliance, Washington, DC
"Sustainable Biomaterials: Criteria, Benefits, Challenges & Market-Based Tools"

When: Tuesday, March 13, 2012
Time:   6 pm, followed by Reception at 7 pm
Location: OVC Lifetime Learning Centre, Rm1714, University of Guelph

The development of bioplastics and other biobased materials holds great promise to mitigate many of the problems associated with plastic derived from nonrenewable sources. However, they are not an automatic panacea. As the interest in biomaterials grows, so follows concern regarding sourcing and end-of-life issues surrounding these materials such as food competition and GMOs and compostability vs recyclability. We will hear from the Sustainable Biomaterials Collaborative, and its efforts to promote innovative programs that allows buyers of biobased products to support sustainable agricultural practices.

Hosted by Professor Amar Mohanty, Director, Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre

View Seminar Announcement

Seminar Recording

Trent University Students visit BDDC
8 March, 2012

42 second year biology students from Trent University visited BDDC, led by Sara Pieper, their course instructor.

BDDC trainees win poster awards at the OMAFRA Knowledge Exchange Day-KTT in Action
1 February, 2012

BDDC trainees participated in the OMAFRA Knowledge Exchange Day: KTT in Action event. The event was co-hosted by the Office of Research, UofG and the Research and Innovation Branch, OMAFRA.

Congratulations to Nima Zarrinbakhsh, First Prize winner (for his poster "Bioethanol Industry Coproducts in Value-Added Biocomposite Applications") and Vidhya Nagarajan, Second Prize winner (for her poster "Biomass Based Green Composites: Advancing Towards a Sustainable Future").

The Honourable Ted McMeekin, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs visits BDDC
23 January, 2012

The Honourable Ted McMeekin, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, and Fareed Amin, Deputy Minister, were welcomed to BDDC by Peter Pauls, Chair of Plant Agriculture Department, with presentations from Amar Mohanty, Director of BDDC, and Gord Surgeoner, President of Ontario Agri-Food Technologies, followed by the tour of the facility. Other visiting members included: Karen Chan, Assistant Deputy Minister, OMAFRA; Michael Tooms, Director Research Innovation, OMAFRA and Rich Moccia, Associate Vice-President, Agrifood & Partnerships, University of Guelph.

OMAFRA-KTT Bio-Economy & BDDC Seminar
15 December, 2011

Dr. Alejandro García & René Carmona, from the University of Chile, in Santiago, visited the BDDC, OMAFRA, as a part of the collaboration with Professor Amar Mohanty and Dr. Manjusri Misra. They gave a presentation on “Research at the University of Chile related to second generation bioethanol, our experience and challenges”.

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Car Day at the Canadian Science and Technology Museum
7 December, 2011

Dr. Peter Frise (far left), Scientific Director and CEO of AUTO21 Inc, joined Mme Denise Amyot (far right) in cutting the ribbon to open an exhibit on biocomposite plastics at the Canada Science and Technology Museum.
Professor Amar Mohanty, University of Guelph (second left) and Professor Mohini Sain, University of Toronto (third left).

Two interactive online exhibitions were launched on the same day: In Search of the Canadian Car and You Are What You Drive.

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Missouri Legislators' and Missouri Biotech Association (MOBIO) tour of the University of Guelph BDDC
7 December, 2011

The legislators' interest was in learning about biotech and ag-biotech in Ontario, looking at successful models for developing clusters & commercializing technology, and building cooperative relationships between the two regions. As a part of their Ontario tour, they learned more about the BDDC, its role in the local economy and its success stories. They were welcomed by the Fraçois Tardif, the Acting Chair of the Plant Agriculture Department.

OMAFRA-KTT Bio-Economy & BDDC Seminar
1 December, 2011

Professor Rodrigo Navia, from the University of La Frontera in Temuco, Chille visited the University of Guelph and BDDC as a part of the collaboration with Professor Amar Mohanty. Prof. Navia gave a presentation on “Biofuels from microalgae: the Chilean example”.

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BDDC attends 8th Bi-Annual BioCar Research Meeting and Advisory Panel Meeting
18 November, 2011
This meeting was held at the University of Windsor, CAW Students Centre. This was the last meeting for the Ontario BioCar Initiative, an ORF-RE funded project. The meeting brought together researchers and partners of the project and had presentations on the latest contributions to the Ontario BioCar Initiative project.

Bio-Bins Are U of G Innovation
5 May, 2011
Canadian retailers sell storage bins made with U of G biocomposite formula.

BDDC presents at OAFT AGM
4 March, 2011
At the most recent Ontario Agri-Food Technologies Annual General Meeting, Professor Mohanty gave a presentation entitled "Bioproducts Discovery and Development Center (BDDC): What is happening & Which Way are we Going?"

The BetterPlanet Project
8 February, 2011
The BetterPlanet Project is a call to action for the University of Guelph community and people around the world to work together to find solutions for a healthy, equitable and sustainable world. Click on the video in the following link for more information!

Dr. Mohanty Speaks On Advances In The Development Of Bio Products
9 January, 2011
Dr. Amar Mohanty presented an update on "Renewable Feedstocks to Bio Products". The aim of Dr. Mohanty's research is to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels and he is working toward a low carbon economy.

Green & Clean - Bioplastic: The Water Bottle That Won’t Live A Thousand Years
29 December, 2010
Since petroleum-based plastics are estimated to take somewhere between 500 and 1,000 years to break down in today’s landfills...

Discovery centre leading the way in plant innovation
13 December, 2010
The way to re-energize manufacturing in North America and in Ontario is through a transition to a biobased economy. A sustainable economy that uses renewable resources to create bio-based products that are created through green manufacturing process. The timing is right because there is, says Mohanty, a wave of support for policies, products and processes that are 'green' or environmentally-friendly...

Going Green / Part 5 of a five-part series about Ontario's Green Energy Hub
10 December, 2010
Standing at a table in a laboratory at the University of Guelph, Dr. Amar Mohanty picks up an odd-shaped object to show to a visitor. "This is a prototype of a car door panel," he explains. "This is one we develop through a composition of switchgrass and bio-plastics, plastic made from renewable resources. "You know there are 100,000 different car parts, both interior and exterior and we're looking at ways of making them from renewable resources." ...

The Bioenvironmental Polymer Society 18th Annual Beps Meeting
13 October, 2010
Running from October 13-16 at the Sheraton Centre Hotel in Toronto, ON. Canada.

Keen on Green
18 September, 2010

Turning soy, wheat, corn and other crops into everything from car parts to fuel is a way to keep Ontario clean and green. And that’s the goal of the Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre and the researchers who conduct studies there.

The Bioproducts Discovery & Development Centre hightlighted on the cover and page 23 of the special "Agri-Food Yearbook" edition of U of G's Research 2009. [2.95 MB]

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Jamaica: Ministry Of Agriculture Signs MoU With Canadian University
6 August, 2010

Ministry Of Agriculture Signs MoU With Canadian University

A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed Friday August 6 between Jamaica's Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries and the University of Guelph, Canada, to foster collaboration in research, student and information exchange and technical assistance.

The signatories were Jamaica's Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, Hon. Dr. Christopher Tufton, and Vice-President of Research at the university, Professor Kevin Hall.

In an interview with JIS News, Dr. Tufton said the agreement will seek to identify common areas for research, training and application in the field of agriculture.

"We intend to do some follow-up quickly to try and get a delegation to Jamaica to work with our research institutions, like the University of the West Indies, and to essentially match their skills set to our requirements and our skills set also and, therefore, form a mutually beneficial arrangement," Dr. Tufton said.

He added that this would allow for the transfer of best practices in a number of areas, particularly in dairy and greenhouse technology.

The Minister is in Canada on an official visit from August 3 to 11. He described his visit, so far, as very informative, especially the tour of the Ontario Agricultural College, which is part of the University of Guelph.

"They are doing a lot of work, not just primary production, but also converting primary products into value-added products, environmentally friendly products, and other forms of agro business initiatives," he said.

Established in 1874, the Ontario Agricultural College (OAC) is one of the founding colleges of the University of Guelph. It is a leader in "life sciences education and research" and focuses on four key areas - agriculture, food, the environment and rural communities.

Dr. Tufton and his delegation met with a number of faculty members of the OAC, and private sector personnel who are experts in the fields of crops, dairy, veterinary, greenhouse, tree fruits and bioproducts.

His delegation comprised: Jamaica's Consul General to Toronto, Seth George Ramocan; Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Donovan Stanberry; Chief Technical Director in the Ministry, Dr. Marc Panton; Director of the Centre of Excellence for Advanced Technology, Dr. Derrick Deslandes; and Jampro North America's Senior Consulting Officer, Nardia McKenzie.

Dr. Tufton then moved onto Ottawa, where he was expected to take part in the Independence activities of the Jamaican community, meet with Canadian officials and tour several agencies.

SPARK*air: Amar Mohanty - Soyplastics
17 June, 2010
This video by SPARK*air outlines the current work that is being done in the BDDC regarding soy plastic.

U of G Hosts International Bioplastics and Green Composites Conference
31 March, 2010
Guelph - Should bioproducts manufacturers receive public subsidies to spur more "green" consumption? Should Canada follow other countries' lead and adopt specific targets for use of renewable resources? Policies and products will be on the agenda during this year's "Bioplastics and Green Composites 2010" workshop to be held in Guelph March 31-April 1.

BDDC researchers receive $3.5M grant from the Ontario Ministry of Research and Innovation
24 February, 2010

Prof. Amar Mohanty will head a seven-member team of researchers from four Ontario universities making new industrial bioproducts from bio-resources. With their $3.5-million grant, the researchers hope to improve the utilization of co-products (lignin, hemicelluloses and crude glycerol) that are created during the production of second-generation biofuels (ones made from non-food crops).

More at UofG News Release - "Province Invests $7.2 Million in U of G Research"

Liberal Senate Forum, Statement by Senator Lorna Milne: University of Guelph
29 May, 2009
Honourable senators, a few weeks ago I was able to spend the morning exploring the Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre of Excellence at the University of Guelph. It is a wonderful new educational research and outreach facility. I was amazed at what can be produced from waste products and from extremely inexpensive plant materials using nanotechnology...

Roundtable on the Future of the Bio-Based Economy in Canada
11 May, 2009
On May 11, 2009, the Public Policy Forum convened experts from industry, academia, and governments for a multi-stakeholder dialogue on the opportunities and challenges facing the bio-based economy in Canada. Expert speakers in the morning discussed how various sectors of the bio-economy are managing through the economic crisis. They identified priorities for action to maintain and increase the economic competitiveness of the bio-economy.