SASKATOON, SASKATCHEWAN, CANADA — The government of Canada announced on Feb. 8 investment in a short-path distillation equipment for the POS Pilot Plant in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada.
The short-path distillation (SPD) equipment purifies ingredients from plant feedstock. These ingredients can then be used in agri-food, biofuels, functional foods and nutraceuticals. The government will invest up to C$911,000 to help with the equipment purchase.
A first investment of C$461,000 through Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s Canadian Agricultural Adaptation Program (CAAP) as well as an investment of C$450,000 will enable POS to offer additional services to clients seeking ingredients, such as essential oils, which can be purified by this process. POS clients want to separate edible oils into highly unsaturated and saturated fractions. The unsaturated fractions may be Omega-3 fatty acids, for higher value functional food and nutraceutical markets.
“Commercial scale short path distillation equipment in POS would be the first of its kind in Canada,” said Dr. Rick Green, vice-president, technology, at POS Bio-Sciences. “Small and medium-sized businesses in Western Canada will benefit by finally being able to export value added extracts from feedstock grown in Western Canada. For example, several companies in Western Canada have products ready for export but need commercial scale SPD equipment to realize their potential. This project, generously supported by Western Economic Diversification and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will help Canadians capture those opportunities.”
Short path distillation separates specific substances, or fractions, from the feedstock by a process of repeated evaporation and condensation. The name ‘short path’ refers to the length of the path travelled by the distillate between the vaporized and condensed stages.