ST. LOUIS — Bunge will collaborate with Corteva Agriscience and Chevron U.S.A. Inc., a subsidiary of energy giant Chevron Corp., to introduce proprietary winter canola hybrids that produce plant-based oil with a lower carbon profile, driven by opportunities in the renewable fuels sector.
The companies said the goal is to increase the availability of vegetable oil feedstocks primarily for the growing domestic renewable fuels market. The companies plan to introduce the winter canola crop into the southern United States with an intention to create a new revenue opportunity for farmers with a sustainable crop rotation.
“Rotational cover crops play a key role in our strategy to continue to develop next generation lower carbon feedstocks,” said Gregory A. Heckman, chief executive officer of Bunge. “As a leader in oilseed processing, we are pleased to work together with Corteva and Chevron to bring this crop innovation to farmers and process it into sustainable solutions for consumers. This is another step in our commitment to creating clear paths to support the decarbonization of the industry.”
The proprietary winter canola hybrids from Corteva can be used in a double crop system, following soybeans or cotton. Bunge Chevron Ag Renewables, the joint venture between Bunge and Chevron plans to contract with farmers to purchase the harvested winter canola crop and use the oil to produce renewable fuel.
In addition to providing farmers a new income opportunity, adding winter canola to a rotation provides a cover crop that can enhance soil health by holding more nutrients, water, and carbon in the soil. A pilot program is expected to be conducted in the 2022-23 growing season to fine-tune best management practices.
“We’re pleased to work with Bunge and Chevron to bring a new option in the southern US that will deliver solutions for farmers to increase productivity and sustainability on their acres, as well as contribute to the need for renewable and less carbon-intensive fuel options,” said Chuck Magro, chief executive officer, Corteva Agriscience, a global seed, crop protection, and digital products and services company.
The companies plan to continue to explore opportunities to sustainably improve farming options and produce lower carbon renewable fuels.“Chevron is committed to advancing a lower-carbon energy future, and we recognize renewable fuels like biodiesel and renewable diesel are a solution to do that,” said Kevin Lucke, president of Chevron Renewable Energy Group. “Feedstock innovation is a critical element of the growth of the renewable fuels industry, and innovative solutions like double-crop winter canola not only benefit the lower-carbon future, but also benefit farmers, consumers and the environment.”