In this first post reacting to an article by K. Quon, find the hyperlink to the NY Times negative article on SZYM.
Pretty much the comments below that first post will give you some respite if the NY TImes article bothered you.
Sorry for the length (don’t have to read them all) but I found all the comments helpful. You may want to read the NY Times link first, then sit back and enjoy the reaction:
Here is what I presume to be the rumored
And possibly damaging Times Article
In the end it’s a debate on labeling on
An industry whose time has come and
Is bullish if anything. The fact that these
Debates are even starting and Eco friendly
Corporations are choosing algae based
Material makes these products more earth friendly
Just tells me that 3-5 years from now
Solazyme Oils will be in a lot more products
What do you guys and gals think of the article?
31 May, 01:34 PMReply! Report AbuseLike1
Kevin Quon , Contributor
Author’s reply » Ridiculous paranoia by little people wanting to fight. They’d have a better argument if the genetically modified protein ended up in the product and we ingested it, but it doesn’t and we don’t. So until then, hollow arguments based on a hollow concern based off an unrelated & unproven concern between GMO & the foods that we intake. Shame on the NYT was making it sound like a conspiracy was about.
31 May, 02:14 PMReply! Report AbuseLike2
The New York Times article is the reality Solazyme and the biotech industry need to deal with. Like many other issues in business, business leaders can’t afford to dwell on unfair negatives, their job is to make lemonade out of life’s lemons. I understand Bill Gates once told graduating high school seniors “Life isn’t fair. Deal with it.”
It seems to me Solazyme is reasonably well positioned to face this potential negative issue. Here are some examples that illustrate their attitudes and focus:
– Their website and presentations are full of comments indicating they are aware of these issues, and addressing them.
– The oil the algae produce is chemically the same as the oil produced by higher organisms.
– Top management frequently mentions their personal awareness and concern for the environmental problems facing the earth and its inhabitants.
– While food applications are huge, the non-food applications could easily accommodate rapid expansion for a couple of decades.
– They seem to be trying to help “green” groups become aware of the trade-off between the existing situation and the new, e.g. coconut oil vs. algae oil.
– The greens sometimes have better intentions than results. Witness the results of their stopping nuclear power which produced the unintended consequence of burning more coal, thereby adding carbon to the atmosphere. Solazyme and the others in the microbiology industry may face a similar short-sighted attitude. Seldom has transformative technology faced no opposition at all.
– They have preemptively sought GRAS status, as well as their literature includes comments such as “easily biodegradable”.
– Their GRAS application indicated that Asians have eaten algae for centuries, and describes many other “food” uses.
For my personal decision-making I have assumed the possibility of a concerted attack on Solazyme and its oil by self-proclaimed “greens” is likely, perhaps inevitable. For me, the only question is the strength and the duration of the attack. I have mentally divided the possibilities into three cases: 1) no attack at all, 2) a middle ground and 3) a powerful, sustained, effective attack. I have spent quite a bit of time considering these three cases with most of my thinking concentrated on the powerful attack. My bottom line is: Solazyme should have plenty of room to grow at great margins for a decade or two, even for the Case 3 most powerful attack. Growth can occur in lubricating oils, dielectric oils, chemicals, paints, fuels and other non-food areas. Collectively these markets are huge. Such an attack may slow growth, but I believe Solazyme will remain viable and will still have a many fold increases in market value. Recall Solazyme has stated they can address markets totaling $3,125 billion ($29 billion animal fats, $206 billion plant oils and $2,900 billion fuels). If they can capture 1 percent of those three trillion dollars, they will have $31 billion in annual revenues. They have already demonstrated that the “non-food” revenues may become huge – e.g. Encapso and Algenist.
So, I’m not worried about the challenge. I am thankful we live in a society that even the naysayers can have their voice heard. This is one of our society’s major strengths. Solazyme is developing a bold new technology and after further study we may find that that technology is not suited for some applications. So be it, the remainder is still huge.
Just one guy’s opinion. Long Solazyme. No one paid me to write this.
31 May, 05:22 PMReply! Report AbuseLike2
I find the article fails in an effort to stir up worry
But I am a biased reader and I
Encourage everyone to make comments
On the NYT article that are constructive
I found myself reading the article thinking
Would have been better had it featured all
Of the benefits if these oils and then played
A smaller portion to labeling concerns because
The big story is the Oils not the labeling
Again I am a biased reader but I bet a lot of NYT readers
Were like Hey Cool Solution to some real issues
31 May, 04:22 PMReply! Report AbuseLike0
That article isn’t going to hurt the stock. If anything it will raise awareness of solazyme and the acceptance its products are achieving…
“BLEEP” people spray round up next to my river, suck down twinkies chased by big gulp cokes, drink, gamble and smoke while driving giant suv’s and I’m supposed to worry about how the oil in my “green” cleaning product was produced by some algae that is helping the rainforest not be cut down but might have some harmful effects that nobody has even documented yet?
Toasty “rushing off to sell now” 54
31 May, 04:47 PMReply! Report AbuseLike0
"Synthetic biology companies note that some of the microorganisms they create to make ingredients like orange and grapefruit flavorings have passed the muster of the Environmental Protection Agency, and that the Food and Drug Administration has declared the ingredients they produce as “generally recognized as safe.” >> The New York Times article means nothing, why you might ask? The Food and Drug Administration has been telling the American public for years what’s good, what’s bad, only to change their opinion at a later date, Bacons good, no, no, it’s bad. Coffee is good, now it’s bad, now it’s good, give me a break! They give hormones to cows to increase the amount of milk a cow will produce. Then they give antibiotics to cows, chickens and who knows what else. They genetically alter crops to keep them from freezing or to keep insects from eating them. as far as I’m concerned, The Food and Drug Administration has very little credibility with me, nor does The New York Times. As I said the New York Times article means nothing! In my opinion anyway
Toasty54 Has it right “If anything it will raise awareness of solazyme and the acceptance its products are achieving…”
31 May, 06:10 PMReply! Report AbuseLike0
“We support Ecover’s determination to move away from using unsustainable palm oil, but would ask your company to reconsider the false solution of using ingredients derived from the new genetic engineering — synthetically modified organisms”
Ahhh… I can smell the patchouli from here. Similar to the critics that will target Encapso, they don’t want natural sources but refuse to consider the great satan of modified organisms. Unfortunately in both instances there will be no logical debate from the “social/earth justice” (translation: think how we think or be cast out) groups.
It’s curious, and not surprising, to note that of all the experts and phd’s in the author group of the open letter not one made themselves aware of the fact that the oil used in the soap contains no gen-modded material. But, let’s not let facts intrude on a good protest.
If there’s any upside to these groups IMO it’s that their knee jerk reactions are as uniform as they are common, becoming only so much noise to the general public. I seriously doubt the consumer, particularly those who have need of alternative products, will shun algal goods due to drum circle in front of their local Starbucks.
Off to remove my shower & tub so that I may stop using soap in the name of their environmental fantasies.
31 May, 06:24 PMReply! Report AbuseLike0
Bay Area Biotech Investor , Contributor
Another great article Kevin!
Could someone explain to be what consolidation of the Bunge joint venture is and what it means?
This is from a previous article: “Additionally, the financials neglect the consolidation of the Solazyme Bunge joint venture which should occur upon the start up of the Moema facility. This joint venture would another $184.5 million to the company’s total assets.”
31 May, 07:15 PMReply! Report AbuseLike0
Btw I listened to the Cowen conference and near the end was surprised to hear that they could add 20k in capacity to Clinton with minimal capital outlay and another 60 k mt with the addition of downstream processing
31 May, 08:15 PMReply! Report AbuseLike2