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1 Dickens Road



South Africa

P. O Box 664



South Africa

Phone: +27 (0)31 949 2208

Fax: +27 (0)88 031 903 8434

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SA Bioproducts’ history dates back to 1987 when AECI Ltd, the South African chemical company elected to enter the emerging field of industrial biotechnology. It commenced research into the production of l-lysine by large scale fermentation. In 1990 a pilot plant was commissioned and a project to commercialize the technology via a new company AECI Bioproducts was approved in 1993.

The plant, with a nameplate capacity of 10 800 metric tons per year of l-lysine.HCl was commissioned in 1995 and reached design output in 1998.

In 2001 AECI elected to exit the industrial biotechnology industry and the business and assets were sold to the management and the name changed to SA Bioproducts.

In 2002 the company installed capacity to recover l-threonine and production of this amino acid commenced in 2003 based on in-house developed technology.

In 2003/4 The company commercialized the fermentation and recovery of l-iso leucine for an associate, Amino GmbH of Germany.

Over the life of the project the fermentation capacity was increased by over 50% from its design capacity.

In 2009 Lallemand Inc of Canada acquired the company and has converted its assets to the manufacture of yeasts.

All of the intellectual property developed over the 25 years since this venture started (including the company name) is now held in a new company.

Continuous improvements are being implemented and a complete Technology Package is available for license via the current directors who were associated with the venture from early in its history.

Gerrit van de Pypekamp

Managing Director

Ross Norton


Gerrit started working on the project while in his final year studying Chemical Engineering at the University of Pretoria in 1992 and joined the project team on graduation. He has thus been involved with the technology development and commercialisation of this technology package for his entire career. He was project manager for the threonine extension and thus personally accountable for the successful implementation of this technology.

Gerrit was Engineering Director for SA Bioproducts when it was sold to Lallemand and is now the Managing Director of the new company which owns the amino acids IP.

Gerrit personally has managed the successful licensing of the technology to 3 separate companies. (see References).

Gerrit provides all of the technology, engineering and project management support necessary to successfully execute an amino acids project, drawn from his extensive career spent solely in this industry

After graduating as a chemical engineer from the University of Cape Town in 1969 Ross spent his entire career working for AECI Ltd until the Management Buy Out of the Lysine Business in 2001. During his career at AECI he had experience in Research & Development, Engineering, Plant Operation and Project Development before being appointed the Manager of the lysine venture and the first Managing Director of AECI Bioproducts (subsequently SA Bioproducts). He was Chairman and a major shareholder of SA Bioproducts at the time of it sale to Lallemand and is now Chairman of the new company.

Ross retains a comprehensive knowledge and data base of the amino acids businesses tracking prices, supply/demand trends and costs and availability of carbohydrate raw materials. From his experience in the industry the company can offer all of the commercial information required to make an informed business decision in the amino acids industry.

Dr. Elena Nevines

Senior Scientist

Elena joined SA Bioproducts in 2002 and worked in the company until the Lallemand takeover in 2009. She started her career as an Analytical Chemist setting up and optimising HPLC methods for amino acids analysis and implementing NIR technology across the Lysine, Threonine and Isoleucine production processes. She later joined the development team and actively participated in specialised projects from creating new products to solving plant performance mysteries.

One of the significant Elena’s contributions was in optimisation and development of the plant scale ion exchange separation processes using ISEP simulated moving bed chromatography for both lysine and isoleucine purification.

In addition to SA Bioproducts Elena has also worked in companies in sugar and food industries and is thus familiar with the analytical methods and methodologies employed in these industries.

Elena provides the Chemistry support, focusing on the HPLC analysis of amino acids as well as of other components of bacterial fermentation. She is well versed in the Chemistry of the ion exchange resins and selecting optimal conditions for separating different substances.