Friday, December 21, 2012

Happy Holidays -AOCS Office Closure

Thank you to all who made our progress possible this year. We hope you have a wonderful holiday.

Please note that AOCS will be closed December 24 through January 1. Orders received during this time will not be processed for shipment until January 2.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Patent Law in Biotechnology in the EU

The following information is taken from the February 14, 2012 EU CORDIS News Release:

The European Commission will be building a new team with 15 experts, to examine the development and implications of patent law in the field of biotechnology and genetic engineering. The group will consist of experts in the areas of intellectual property law (in particular patent law and the law on plant variety rights), public and industrial research and development, life sciences (including plant and animal breeding) and biotechnology. Their role will be to examine the implications of patent law and provide high quality legal and technical expertise, which will help the Commission with its reporting obligations.

The team of experts will be crucial in advising the Commission on a number of questions concerning the Directive (98/44) of the EU's Council of Ministers and the European Parliament on the legal protection of biotechnological inventions, the so-called 'Biotech Patent Directive'.

One particular area that has raised many questions is on how the Directive affects access to the human genome data and possible restrictions on the research and applications for which this data could be used. The role of the experts will be to assist and advise the European Commission in its reporting requirements and on the legal protection of biotechnological inventions (referred to as 'Directive 98/44/EC').

Patents are necessary in biotechnology as they provide an incentive to innovation. Without the safeguards provided by patents, industry and other inventors would be unwilling to invest their time and money in research and development. However, biotechnology carries a considerable amount of high risk investment, particularly in the field of genetic engineering. So adequate patent protection needs to be in place to encourage the investment required to create jobs and maintain the European Union's competitiveness in this important area of research. This is why Directive 98/44 on the legal protection of biotechnological inventions was proposed and, after lengthy and thorough discussions within the European Parliament and among Member States, it was adopted.

But still, the patent laws surrounding biotechnology remain a complex issue, particularly the ethical aspects of inventions. For example, discoveries, which do not extend human ability, but only human knowledge, are by their very nature not patentable. Sequencing of a genome belongs to the area of discovery, which means it cannot be the subject of patent protection. However, it is different if a DNA sequence is released from its natural surroundings by means of a technical procedure and is made available for the first time to a commercial application. This makes such a gene 'new' in the patent sense and therefore patentable, if it was not previously accessible to the public and was previously not available.

The position that was agreed by both the European Parliament and the Council of Ministers after much discussion was that patents for inventions comprised of, or based on, gene sequences should be allowed. The Directive therefore provides that inventions based on, or comprised of, gene sequences or partial gene sequences can be patented provided that they satisfy the normal criteria for any invention as well as making clear that patents should not be granted where the application does not include specific reference to the industrial application of the gene sequence.

However, advances in technology have made understanding the isolation and manufacture of genes easier to understand, and are taken into account when a patent is examined, in particular whether the invention in the patent application possesses an inventive step. If it is decided by either the patent offices or the national courts that there is no inventive step then the patent will either be refused or revoked.

It is expected that the addition of a new team of experts will ensure a greater understanding of patentable biotechnology and help to unravel the complexities that surround this area.

For more information, please visit:

News and Notes for Monday December 17, 2012

Vitamin D Levels Linked to Daytime Sleepiness
A strong but complicated association exists between vitamin D levels and daytime sleepiness, and race is a major factor, according to a small new study. Read more from HealthDaily News.

Palm Oil Slumps to Three-Year Low as Stockpiles Reach Record
Palm, the world’s most consumed cooking oil, tumbled to the lowest level in more than three years amid record inventories in Malaysia and on signs that global supplies will be more than enough to meet demand.  Prices have declined even as soybeans jumped 22 percent this year and wheat advanced 25 percent. Read more from Bloomberg.

Oil Crops Outlook
The USDA Economic Research Service has released its latest monthly report which "... examines supply, use, prices, and trade for oil crops (primarily soybeans and products)."

USDA Grants Support Sustainable Bioenergy Production
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced $10 million in research grants to spur production of bioenergy and biobased products that will lead to the development of sustainable regional systems and help create jobs.  Read the News Release.

Grain Sorghum Ethanol Qualifies as a Renewable Fuel under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) Program
EPA has issued a Final Rule in which determines that "... ethanol made from grain sorghum at dry mill facilities that use natural gas for process energy meets the lifecycle greenhouse gas emissions reduction threshold of 20 percent compared to the baseline petroleum fuel it would replace, and therefore qualifies as renewable fuel ..."

Abstract Alerts

Biopolymers as a Flexible Resource for Nanochemistry
Angew. Chem. Int. Ed.Schnepp, Z. (2012), doi: 10.1002/anie.201206943. Read the abstract.

Enhanced Anticancer Potential of Encapsulated Solid Lipid Nanoparticles of TPD: A Novel Triterpenediol from Boswellia serrata
Shashi Bhushan, Vandita Kakkar, Harish Chandra Pal, Santosh Kumar Guru, Ajay Kumar, D. M. Mondhe, P. R. Sharma, Subhash Chandra Taneja, Indu Pal Kaur, Jaswant Singh, and A. K. Saxena
Molecular Pharmaceutics. Article ASAP. Read the abstract.

Simultaneous determination of methylcarbamate and ethylcarbamate in fermented foods and beverages by derivatization and GC-MS analysis
Shin H, Yang E. Chemistry Central Journal 2012, 6:157 (13 December 2012). Read the abstract.

Friday, December 14, 2012

PPG buys AkzoNobel's North American architectural paints unit for $1.05 billion

PPG Industries says it has reached a definitive agreement to acquire the North American architectural coatings business of AkzoNobel in a deal valued at $1.05 billion. The acquisition includes all of AkzoNobel's North American architectural coatings manufacturing and distribution facilities, paint stores, product lines, and employees related to the production, sale, and distribution of architectural coatings in the United States, Canada, and the Caribbean.
Read the News Release.

Codex Alimentarius CCMAS Special Session with MoniQA Conference

The 4th MoniQA International Conference themed "Food Safety under Global Pressure of Climate Change, Food Security and Economic Crises" will take place in Budapest, Hungary, 26 February - 1 March 2013. The Joint IAM/MoniQA workshop for delegates of Codex Alimentarius CCMAS will be included in the MoniQA Conference as a special session:

Wednesday 27 February 2013:
Session 4: Food Integrity – Authenticity, Labelling, Fraud, Screening for the Unexpected
Chairs: Markus Lipp, USP, USA, and Paul Finglas, IFR, United Kingdom

Thursday 28 February 2013:
Session 13: Challenges and Solutions for Representative Sampling
Chairs: Árpád Ambrus, National Food Safety Authority, Hungary, and Simone Braun, German Cancer Research Center DKFZ, Germany

Friday 1 March 2013
Session 15: Development of a global standard for validation of binary (qualitative) methods
Chair: Ray Shillito, Bayer CropScience, USA

Session 19: Method Validation – Standardisation – Verification: Best of IAM
Chairs: Richard Cantrill, AOCS, USA, and Franz Ulberth, IRMM- JRC, European Commission, Belgium

The full program is available here.

Find Out More

Keynote Speakers 

  • Franz Fischler, former European Union's Commissioner for Agriculture, Rural Development and Fisheries, Austria: Impacts of Economic Crises on Food Markets and How to Make the Food Production Sector Sustainable.
  • Vish Prakash, Distinguished Scientist of CSIR - India, President ISNNAN, Indi: A Sustainable Nutrition Security through a Food Security for Health and Wellness in Developing Countries by Adaptable, Accessible and Affordable Food Technologies.
  • Eleonora Dupouy, Food Safety and Consumer Protection Officer  Regional Office for Europe and Central Asia, FAO, Hungary: Enhancing The Impact Of Agriculture On Food And Nutrition Security Under The Pressure Of Emerging Global Challenges.
  • Elke Anklam, Director Institute for Health and Consumer Protection, Joint Research Center, ISPRA, Italy: Emerging Food Safety Risks and Global Trade.
  • Frans Verstraete, DG SANCO, Brussles: Regulating For Emerging Food Safety Concerns As Regards Mycotoxins And Phytotoxins.
  • Antonio di Giulio, Acting Director Biotechnologies, Agriculture, Food, DG Research, European Commission, Belgium: Horizon 2020 – Future Research for a Safe, Secure and Nutritious Food Supply.


Pre-conference workshops are offered for free to registered conference participants
  • Horizon 2020 - Your Research Priorities on the European Research Agenda
  • Quality Assurance aspects of mycotoxin testing
  • Risk Communication (additional fee applies)
  • Demonstration training on food modelling tools for evaluation of the impact of microstructure on nutritional and sensory properties
  • Open debate on hot topics in food safety for the future
  • Young Scientist Forum

Travel Notes

Limited and exclusive, convenient and discounted travel and accommodation offers for conference participants are available at a first come first serve basis:
  • 15% discount on all flights with Austrian Airlines, the Official Conference Carrier. Use your eVoucher code you receive upon registration to the conference and book your flight at
  • Pre-book your discounted taxi transfer service from any of the airports/train stations in Budapest, Vienna or Bratislava to the conference hotel at
  • Room and breakfast at an unbeatable price at the 4* Conference Hotel Novotel Budapest Congress offers best convenience, free wifi, great comfort, and after conference shopping, fitness and relaxation opportunities with a modern shopping mall next to the hotel, the hotel’s own recreational amenities including an indoor pool, a sauna, and a fitness facility with the latest, modern equipment. Only a limited number of rooms have been blocked for this meeting until the end of 2012! Book now at a special discounted conference rate at

We hope to see you in Budapest, Hungary, 26 February - 1 March 2013.

Dr. Roland Ernest Poms and Dr. Sandor Tömösközi
On behalf of the Organising Committee

News and Notes for Friday December 14, 2012

New Twist On Using Biomass for Perfume, Cosmetic, Personal Care Products
In a new approach for tapping biomass as a sustainable raw material, scientists are reporting use of a Nobel-Prize-winning technology to transform plant "essential oils" -- substances with the characteristic fragrance of the plant -- into high-value ingredients for sunscreens, perfumes and other personal care products. Read more from Science Daily.

Protein signaling between soybean root hairs, bacteria reveals core cellular processes
Understanding what happens to a soybean root hair system infected by symbiotic, nitrogen-fixing soil bacteria, Bradyrhizobium japonicum, could go a long way toward using this symbiosis to redesign plants and improve crop yields, benefiting both food and biofuel production. Read more from

Biobased Briquettes, not Bombs, for the Taliban?
Could biomass briquette mills and improved cook stoves undermine the Taliban — for one percent of what the US now spends? Read more from Biofuels Digest.

Finns develop efficient bio-based plastic production technique
Two quick facts: the volume of oil used every year in the production of plastics equates to approximately 5% of the world’s total oil consumption, and approximately 40% of all plastics are used in packaging. Read more from Foodprocessing.

USDA NIFA Fellowships Grant Program
USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) is seeking applications for the program under its Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI).

Regulation of Nutrition and Health Claims on Packaged Foods in Australia 
Food manufacturers who choose to make claims like low in fat or contains protein for muscle development will have to provide scientific evidence to support these claims under a new food standard.  Read the News Release.

U.S. and World Supply Use Balances for Major Grains, Soybeans and Products and Cotton, and U.S. Supply and Use Data for Sugar and Livestock Products
The USDA Economic Research Service (ERS) has released its monthly report, titled "World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates" (WASDE), which provides the most current USDA forecasts of U.S. and world supply-use balances for these commodities.  View the report (.pdf)

Agilent Technologies’ New Pathway Architect Software to Include SRI International’s BioCyc Pathway Database CollectionAgilent Technologies Inc. and SRI International today announced they have signed a licensing agreement to offer laboratory research customers a package that combines Agilent’s latest release of GeneSpring GX, GeneSpring NGS, Mass Profiler Professional and Pathway Architect version 12.5 with SRI International’s complete BioCyc Pathway Database Collection. The integrated package will allow scientists to access, combine, visualize and analyze biological data sets across multiple “omics” experiments (genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics and metabolomics).  Read the News Release.

  • A Manager of NLEA Support at Eurofins Scientific Inc., (Des Moines, IA, USA) is sought. View the job posting.
  • A Deputy Director for Research is sought by the FDA National Center for Toxicological Research (NCTR) located in Jefferson, Arkansas. View the USA Jobs posting.
  • A Food Safety Specialist and Assistant Professor who will be involved in a two-state extension appointment is sought by the Kansas State University and the University of Missouri. View the posting. 


Announcing Amended Methods for the Official Methods and Recommended Practices of the AOCS, 6th Edition, 2nd Printing.
At the Uniform Methods Committee Meeting of the 103rd AOCS Annual Meeting & Expo, a majority vote was taken to enact the online publishing of both official and amended records of the Official Methods and Recommended Practices of the AOCS. For more information, visit:

Save in December on AOCS Methods
The Official Methods and Recommended Practices of the AOCS, 6th Edition, 2nd Printing, is ON SALE for the month of December. The AOCS has set the standard for analytical methods critical to processing, trading, utilizing, and evaluating fats, oils, and lipid products. Worldwide acceptance has made the AOCS Methods a requirement wherever fats and oils are analyzed. Order now to save.

Welcome Clariant Corp -New Gold Corporate Member
As one of the world’s leading specialty chemical companies, Clariant contributes to value creation with innovative and sustainable solutions for customers from many industries. Our portfolio is designed to meet very specific needs with as much precision as possible. At the same time, our research and development is focused on addressing the key trends of our time. These include energy efficiency, renewable raw materials, emission-free mobility, and conserving finite resources. Our business units are divided into six market segments: Consumer Care, Industrial Applications, Plastics & Coatings, Energy, Resources, and Bio Tech.

Monday, December 10, 2012

News and Notes for Monday December 10, 2012

Soy Checkoff Announces High-Oleic Soy Expansion
The national soy checkoff announced Thursday it has authorized the formation of a major industry partnership aimed at growing the market for a healthier soil oil through high-oleic soybeans. Read more from Farm Futures.

Consumers May Get Their Omega-3 Through Cows Rather Than Fish
As reported in the November issue of the Journal of Dairy Science, fortifying cow milk with Omega-3 fatty acids, surprisingly, leads to an undetectable smell or taste of fish oil while providing heart healthy Omega-3s, Vitamin D and calcium at the same time in a glass of milk. Read more from EMaxHealth.

Personal care demand in Africa drives palm oil production
The desire for personal care products in Ghana and Nigeria is driving palm oil production in Africa and has even led to palm oil being imported as the local markets fail to keep up with the demand. Read more from Cosmetics Design Europe.

Polyols from bio-PDO and succinic acid
This year seems to be a good year for expanding DuPont Tate & Lyle’s bio-based propanediol (PDO) applications.  The company announced that its Susterra bio-based PDO combined with bio-succinic acid supplied by Myriant, are now being used by Piedmont Chemical to produce 100% bio-based polyester polyols. Read more from the Green Chemicals Blog.

Edible Adhesives Patent
The USDA Agricultural Research Service has announced its intent to grant an exclusive royalty bearing license for a patent, titled "Sugar-Based Edible Adhesives" to City Center Farms, LLC of Phoenix, Arizona. Information about the patent is posted at

 AOCS News

Announcing Amended Methods for the Official Methods and Recommended Practices of the AOCS, 6th Edition, 2nd Printing.
At the Uniform Methods Committee Meeting of the 103rd AOCS Annual Meeting & Expo, a majority vote was taken to enact the online publishing of both official and amended records of the Official Methods and Recommended Practices of the AOCS. For more information, visit:

Program Available - Oils and Fats World Market Update
Experience unparalleled education, strategic thinking, and discussion regarding the progress, opportunities, and challenges facing the fats and oils industry. View the full conference program.

Call for Papers - XV Latin American Congress on Fats and Oils
CORCHIGA and AOCS are proud to organize the XV Latin American Congress and Exhibition on Fats and Oils at the Sheraton Hotel and Convention Center in Santiago, Chile. Themed Chile and a World of Oils, this congress will cover important and timely topics in the fats and oils industries especially chosen to enhance attendees' business knowledge of today's market.
Submission deadline: 4 January 2013
Full submission guidelines available at:

Abstract Alerts

Method Development for Fecal Lipidomics Profiling
Katherine E Gregory , Susan Schiavo Bird , Vera S. Gross , Vasant R Marur , Alexander V. Lazarev , W. Allan Walker , and Bruce S. Kristal. Anal. Chem., Just Accepted Manuscript. DOI: 10.1021/ac303011k. Publication Date (Web): December 4, 2012. Read the abstract.

Thermophilic fermentation of acetoin and 2,3-butanediol by a novel Geobacillus strain
Xiao Z, Wang X, Huang Y, Huo F, Zhu X, Xi L, Lu JR. Biotechnology for Biofuels 2012, 5:88 (6 December 2012). Read the abstract.

Biodiesel production from microalgal isolates of southern Pakistan and quantification of FAMEs by GC-MS/MS analysis
Musharraf SG, Ahmed MA, Zehra N, Kabir N, Choudhary MI, Rahman A. Chemistry Central Journal 2012, 6:149 (5 December 2012). Read the abstract.

Friday, December 7, 2012

News and Notes for Friday December 7, 2012

Demystifying Biobased Products Key to Marketing Success
Communicating the benefits of biobased content, the world's newest ecological marketing term, is often tricky. "Biobased" represents all of green marketing's traditional challenges — including greenwash — but has additional, unique challenges all its own. Read more from Sustainable Brands.

Plastic packaging industry is moving towards completely bio-based products
A transition to bio-based economy nevertheless requires products that are not only ecologically sustainable but also competitive in terms of quality. Read more from Phys.Org.

Chinese Have Greater Confidence in Green Products than North Americans
A recent survey by DuPont revealed a growing understanding of green products among urban Chinese consumers. The findings reflect the potential for green products in the world’s largest consumer market.  Read more from Sustainable Plant.

EU Commission backs controversial sustainable palm oil scheme
The European Commission has approved a scheme that would certify as sustainable transport fuel made from palm oil, condemned by environmental groups as one of the most damaging sources of biodiesel. Read more from Reuters.

Nanotechnology consumer database with risk information launched
The Danish Consumer Council and the Danish Ecological Council has in cooperation with DTU Environment developed a database, which help consumers identify more than 1,200 products that may contain nanomaterials. Read more from Nanowerk News.

Biosensors a key area for nanotechnology
Nanobiosensors hold considerable potential as future areas of development for nanotechnology, according to a recent study. Read more from Food Quality News.

New Omega-3 film launched by IFFO
IFFO, the Marine Ingredients Organisation has launched an informative video about Omega-3’s, nature’s own health products entitled ‘Marine Omega-3 – The Healthiest Fats’.
The film is a response to growing scientific and consumer interest in the subject and can be viewed at:

Requests for Proposals

Anti-Obesity Agents for Food- RFP REQUEST
NineSigma, representing a global food manufacturer, invites proposals for food materials that have an anti-obesity effect, in order to create supplements or food additives that enable weight loss. Find out more about this RFP. 

New Methods for Protein Hydrolysis- RFP REQUEST
 NineSigma, representing a major food products manufacturer, is seeking development partners for highly efficient manufacturing methods for protein hydrolysates without the use of liquid acid or alkali catalysts. Find out more about this RFP.

Efficient Methods for Drying Wet Polymer Granules- RFP REQUEST
NineSigma, representing a global polymer producer, invites proposals for novel technologies that can efficiently dry wet polymer granules during a batch production process. Find out more about this RFP.

Measuring Cleanliness, Dryness and Brilliancy of Goods inside a Dishwasher- RFP REQUEST
NineSigma, representing a consumer goods company, invites proposals for technologies that can determine how well a dishwasher is performing by measuring cleanliness, dryness and brilliancy of goods. Find out more about this RFP.

Abstract Alerts

Trends, analytical methods and precision in the determination of perfluoroalkyl acids in human milk
A. Kärrman, G. Lindström.TrAC Trends in Analytical Chemistry. Available online 1 December 2012. Read the abstract.

Dilatational rheology of a gel point network formed by nonionic soluble surfactants at the oil–water interface
Nicolas Anton ,  Thierry F. Vandamme and Patrick Bouriat. Soft Matter, 2013, Advance Article. Received 19 Sep 2012, Accepted 13 Nov 2012. First published on the web 30 Nov 2012. Read the abstract.

Supporting food security in the 21st century through resource-conserving increases in agricultural production
Norman Uphoff. Agriculture & Food Security 2012, 1:18 doi:10.1186/2048-7010-1-18
Published: 1 December 2012. Read the abstract.

Comparative study of sulfite pretreatments for robust enzymatic saccharification of corn cob residue
Bu L, Xing Y, Yu H, Gao Y, Jiang J. Biotechnology for Biofuels. 2012, 5:87 (4 December 2012). Read the abstract.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

News and Notes for Wednesday December 5, 2012

Refinery growth to boost Indonesia's palm oil output next year
An expansion in the edible oil processing industry in top palm oil producer Indonesia is expected to boost its consumption to about 7.5 million tonnes next year, which may reduce the amount available for export. Read more from Reuters.

Outlook for U.S. Agricultural Trade 
USDA Economic Research Service (ERS) has released its latest quarterly report  "FY 2013 Exports Forecast at a Record $145 Billion; Imports at a Record $115 Billion" (.pdf)

DuPont breaks ground on world’s largest Cellulosic Biorefinery
30 million gallon plant in Nevada, Iowa will expand central Iowa’s energy exports, add to local grower economy. Read more from Biofuels Digest.

EFSA to compile inventory of food and feed nanotechnology uses
The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) is preparing a document summarizing current knowledge on nanotechnology applications in the food and feed sectors, according to an internal mandate. The project includes an inventory of applications of nanotechnologies in food and feed additives and in food contact materials. Read more from Chemical Watch.

The Next Generation of Dairy Ingredients
Dairy ingredients are have a natural ability to perform the functions of foaming, gelling, emulsification and other important characteristics in food. The Dairy Research Institute  supports new dairy-ingredient research to maximize the capabilities of milk and whey-derived ingredients, and to increase opportunities for their use in foods and beverages. Read more from Food Product Design.

FSMA Food Safety Plan Expectations and Overview of Preventive Controls
This free paper from Leavitt Partners and Eurofins  covers important updates related to the US Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) and recent changes that will impact food shipments to the US. Download the paper (.pdf)

Synchrotron gives insight into green energy enzymes
UC Davis chemists have been using a Japanese synchrotron to get a detailed look at enzymes that could help power the green economy. The work was published online Nov. 8 by the journal Angewandte Chemie and is featured on the cover of the Nov. 26 issue.  Read more from Science Codex.


Save in December on AOCS Methods
The Official Methods and Recommended Practices of the AOCS, 6th Edition, 2nd Printing, is ON SALE for the month of December. The AOCS has set the standard for analytical methods critical to processing, trading, utilizing, and evaluating fats, oils, and lipid products. Worldwide acceptance has made the AOCS Methods a requirement wherever fats and oils are analyzed. Order now to save.

Welcome GKD-USA -Bronze Corporate Member
GKD-USA understands its role as an innovative problem solver. The range of our applications includes very finely woven mesh for the filtration industry, process conveyor belting for the food industry, and decorative and functional applications with our metal fabrics for architecture.

Welcome Crystal Filtration Co- Bronze Corporate Member
Crystal Filtration, a leader in the filtration industry for over 25 years, has developed a breakthrough product that extends the life of cooking oil, and reduces Free Fatty Acids (FFAs) up to 70%.

Monday, December 3, 2012