BIG River Resources LLC and Prairie Gold Inc. have signed agreements forming a joint venture to produce corn zein proteins.
The new venture, Big River Prairie Gold LLC, will construct and operate a corn zein production facility near Galva, Ill., at the site of one of Big River's 110 million gal. ethanol plants. The facility is expected to employ approximately 15 people, and construction is scheduled to begin before April 2014.
Zein is a high-value co-product that can be produced from corn prior to the ethanol fermentation process. It forms a polymer that may be used as a plastic, fiber, film coating, confectioners glaze or gum. It is also edible (with very low allergenicity), fully biodegradable and has excellent grease-resistant properties.