The NSW government has announced a new $6 million funding program for the development of the synthetic biology and biomanufacturing industries.

The fund, announced by Minister for Science, Innovation and Technology, Alister Henskens, will be supported by the Emerging Industry Infrastructure Fund (EIIF) and will “grow our economy, create jobs, turbocharge industries and secure a brighter future for NSW,” said Henskens.

Australia’s growing alternative protein sector is well placed to take advantage of the program, which will form part of the NSW government’s 20 Year R&D Roadmap. The Roadmap identified “Synthetic Biology and Biomanufacturing as an area of comparative advantage for NSW,” Henskens said.

Synthetic biology and biomanufacturing involve designing and manufacturing new and existing living systems in order to make products. They have applications in biofuels, environmental protection, healthcare and food production, and Australian companies including All G Foods, Eden Brew and Change Foods all use precision fermentation technology (a form of synthetic biology) to recreate animal-based proteins for use in novel food and beverages.

NSW Chief Scientist & Engineer, Professor Hugh Durrant-Whyte, said the program will support shared synthetic biology and biomanufacturing research infrastructure, while encouraging collaboration between university and industry groups.

“There is opportunity for NSW, with its leading researchers and technologies, to become a major global player in this dynamic space,” said Professor Durrant-Whyte, who also estimated that the global economic impact of synthetic biology will be valued at up to US$1.6 trillion by 2025.

More information on eligibility can be found here. Applications close Thursday 20 October, 2022.

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