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Success is a process

Interview with Eric Goossens, Managing Director of Bioprocess Pilot Facility B.V.

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“I studied chemistry and process technology. Then l spent half my working life in the chemical sector, and the other half in biotech” explains Mr. Goossens. As it turns out, it was the perfect training ground for his current role: At BPF, the chemical and biotech worlds merge.

Europe boasts six piloting facilities that offer services similar to those of BPF. But BPF distinguishes itself in a number of ways: Firstly, it offers pretreatment and hydrolysis in addition to fermentation and down stream processing. The scale on which it operates is also considerable.

Scaling the process from the lab right up to a pre-commercial scale means it can give its clients options: where necessary, to adjust the product and test it again, or if they are satisfied with the results, to take the plunge and build their own facilities for mass production.

“Not forgetting we have a certified food grade unit – we offer development opportunities for our food industry clients too.” What is most interesting though, is BPF’s approach. ”We’re a purpose-driven company. Our employees want to contribute to a better world. Green and sustainable process development, circularity in production: these are really important subjects for us,” Mr. Goossens continues. “We have experienced, driven employees. We believe in open discussion, and lots of it – both internally and with our clients. This allows us to gain as much information as possible from our clients, and for us to establish what methods to implement, to ensure we get them the best results.”

Mr. Goossens stresses however, that the intellectual property rights remain with client, always. “We have no ambition to publish anything related to the work we do for our clients. That’s not what interests us.”

Eric Goossens
A huge challenge facing the world right now, is the supply of
protein. Producing protein from renewable resources is something
that interests many of our clients – and us as well. Eric GoossensManaging Director

With so much demand, it is not surprising that BPF has several operating units: “The fermentation process is performed using micro-organisms, that effectively convert sugar to other products. We purify and refine the product so that it adheres to the specifications our client desires, in the downstream processing facility.”

Clients include startups, small and medium businesses, and corporate companies from all over the world, with a high concentration in Europe, North America, Asia and Australia. Interestingly, some of its clients already have their own piloting facilities. So why do they approach BPF? For its expertise and asset base. Which, in itself, speaks volumes. Next to this, BPF helps clients to de-risk their business and shorten the time-to-market. These are key drivers for the development of a viable business case.

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