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New centre to focus on forest economy bioproducts in Ontario’s north


Toronto, ON – Ontario’s provincial government is providing $25 million for a new Centre for Research and Innovation in the Bio-Economy (CRIBE) in Thunder Bay.

The Centre for Research and Innovation in the Bio-Economy (CRIBE) in Thunder Bay will create new opportunities and high-paying jobs in this rapidly growing and cutting-edge sector of the forestry industry. CRIBE is an important part of Ontario’s efforts to support growth in the bioeconomy, replacing products now made with fossil fuels with those created from renewable resources.

This centre will attract world-class researchers to northern Ontario and will work to develop the next generation of forestry products, including environmentally friendly substitutes for a range of materials used in Ontario’s factories. CRIBE will focus on research, development and commercialization as it relates to the use of fibres, molecules and cellulose from Ontario forests for new products and processes such as resins and medicinal compounds. The centre will focus on industry-led projects with clear market potential. It will also feature strong linkages to research strengths across Ontario. For example, with University of Guelph’s Centre for Bioproduct Discovery (http://www.bioproductsatguelph.ca/newsevt/cbdd_construction.html) and Development and University of Toronto’s Centre of Biocomposites and Biomaterials Processing (http://chem-eng.utoronto.ca/~bioproducts/research.htm). It will leverage other program investments from the provincial government (for example, Regional Innovation Network (http://www.mri.gov.on.ca/english/programs/RIN-Program.asp) programs), and leverage other provincial infrastructure investments (e.g. Sarnia-Lambton’s Bioindustrial Innovation Centre (http://www.mri.gov.on.ca/english/news/BioIC081407.asp) and Queen’s University/Novelis Advanced Research and Innovation Institute (http://www.queensu.ca/about/research/)).

The centre’s R&D program is expected to research, develop and implement new technologies and/or processes, carry out pilot/demonstration projects and drive a new culture of innovation in the forestry sector.