Palliser's promise: Brassica carinata, An emerging western Canadian crop for delivery of new bio-industrial oil feedstocks.

Marillia, E.-F., Francis, T., Falk, K.C., Smith, M., and Taylor, D.C. (2014). "Palliser's promise: Brassica carinata, An emerging western Canadian crop for delivery of new bio-industrial oil feedstocks.", Biocatalysis and Agricultural Biotechnology, 3(1), pp. 65-74. doi : 10.1016/j.bcab.2013.09.012  Access to full text

Abstract

The global demand for vegetable-based oils continues to rise, while the availability of highly productive arable farm land is becoming progressively limited. To meet the requirements of the future, it will be essential to develop new and improved temperate oilseed cultivars adapted to less-than-optimum acreage. An example is the brown soil zone in the semi-arid marginal land area of the south-western Canadian prairies known as Palliser's Triangle, which is not well-suited to the growth of crops like canola. Brassica carinata is a species that is well-adapted to growth in semi-arid regions and is highly drought-tolerant. It is being developed as a new crop platform dedicated to the production of bio-industrial oil feedstocks, most notably oils enriched in the very long-chain fatty acids (VLCFAs) erucic and nervonic. VLCFA-enriched B. carinata oils have applications in the manufacture of bio-jet fuels, bio-diesel, enhanced oil recovery (EOR) surfactants, bio-plastics and many other products. The contributions of B. carinata oil products to both bio-based aviation fuels and to the more-efficient extraction of recalcitrant fossil fuel resources for maximum return at drill sites will help to create a more sustainable energy sector. B. carinata breeding and biotechnology efforts are being combined to establish this crop as a bio-industrial oil platform and this chapter highlights recent progress in this regard.

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