USDA awards ISU $1 million grant for biobased products

Iowa State University will receive a $1 million grant from the United States Department of Agriculture to develop new biobased paint, coating and adhesive products, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack told the Ames Tribune Tuesday.

The grant is a portion of $4 million of support for research projects, which Vilsack said are “critically important to expand the biofuel and bioenergy industry.”

The materials ISU will develop are derived from acrylated glycerol, which is a co-product of the biodiesel production process.

This is the new world that we live in,” Vilsack said in a telephone interview with the Tribune, ahead of an official announcement on the grant planned for Dec. 2. “The ability to take what we grow, convert it into fuel and energy and as bi-products and co-products of that production process; create additional materials like adhesive materials or coating materials that are used by American businesses to package items; and to basically create new job opportunities.”»