Industrial use of biological processes
The biotechnology industry is one of the most innovative scientific and industrial sectors. The term encompasses a wide area from stem cell research, genetic modification of plants, bacteria and animals, to the production of bioethanol. The roots of biotechnology go far back, with traditional processes including brewing beer and the use of yeast in baking.
e-nema GmbH is specialized in industrial production of microorganisms and nematodes in bioreactors. We started producing Heterorhabditis bacteriophora, an insect-pathogenic nematode, in a 500 litres bioreactor back in 1997. Now, we regularly produce different species of nematodes and types of bacteria, and several yeasts and fungi in bioreactors with capacities ranging up to 60,000 litres.
A wide range of products are made from the organisms. In biological plant protection products, it is mostly the living organisms that are the active substance. They are separated from the fermentation broth and transferred into storable products. By contrast, biocatalysis deals with specific substances which produce the microorganisms. Here, the bacteria or fungi have to be isolated from the end product. Countless varieties of substances can be produced in this way. Some of these can also be synthesised chemically; however, biocatalysis is often the most cost-effective way.