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Not too long ago, a biofertilizer customer came to me frantically and explained, “I need to grow 7 strains of Bacillus in 3 weeks because it’s planting season and I can’t miss this year’s season.” I felt sorry for him, yet I had no choice but to say: “I’m sorry, but we cannot help you. Your timelines just aren’t realistic.” This exact interaction has happened more times than I care to remember. Trust me, I understand how big the opportunities are, especially with row crops like corn, soybeans, and wheat, and it truly pains me not to be able to help. Nevertheless, the size of the market and opportunity doesn’t magically reduce the time needed to optimize the microbial strains. Down the road he went, hoping to find someone who would say yes to his impractical timeline. He found someone who would take his money, but they too were unable to deliver. I would later come to find out that both his product and company didn’t make it. I wish we could have done more; if only they had involved us earlier! We find customers will spend years on strain development to only flush it all down the drain by giving their fermentation manufacturer a few weeks to deliver on a multitude of strains. So, I will plant the seed with you now: start early with your custom fermentation partner. Involve them right away when choosing your biopesticide or biofertilizer strains and allow them time to scale your product efficiently and economically. We can save you years of turmoil and potentially your business, but we need time! In addition to including your fermentation partner early, it is important to evaluate if you have certain factors or limitations that will extend your scale up timelines. Here are four of the most common factors that often get forgotten.
  • Difficult species. Some species are harder to grow than others and may take extra time to figure out.
  • Unrealistic pricing limitations. We often learn that people have had their product produced overseas, with poor purity or quality control, and ask us to produce it with higher standards for the same low price. It takes time to overcome these types of cost limitations.
  • Having your “Own Process.” Some companies will figure out in advance how to grow their strain and come to us with an exacting Standard Operating Procedure. Please understand that your methods are often not a fit for our equipment and can lead to a lower yield. This approach rarely ever works out well. So, be open to a modified process, or it will be difficult to find the right manufacturer.
  • Media limitations. If you need a high yield, but require GMO-free, allergen-free, meat-free, dairy-free, you might find yourself “High Yield-Free.” With stricter media requirements, more time is needed to optimize.
To put it briefly: we need time to scale-up your product, ensure purity, and create economic feasibility. We grow strains one at a time here at MDG, so multiple strains will require additional focus of strain optimization resources. The more limitations you have, the more time we will need. MDG can do great things for you, but I want to plant a seed with you…

Start with us early!

Consider us a partner early on in your process and let us amaze you with what we can do! From spore to sales, we want to be YOUR partner. [post_title] => Planting the Seed: Start with Your Fermentation Manufacturer Early [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => planting-the-seed-early [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-08-08 15:31:51 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-08-08 19:31:51 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://www.mdgbio.com/?p=2910 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw )
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Become an
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“A customer needs solutions they can be confident in. At MDG, trust in our research is something you can rely on. ”
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CEO & Chief Scientific Officer

Custom Fermentation

Planting the Seed: Start with Your Fermentation Manufacturer Early

  • Mike King
Not too long ago, a biofertilizer customer came to me frantically and explained, “I need to grow 7 strains of Bacillus in 3 weeks because it’s planting season and I can’t miss this year’s season.” I felt sorry for him, yet I had no choice but to say: “I’m sorry, but we cannot help you. Your timelines just aren’t realistic.” This exact interaction has happened more times than I care to remember. Trust me, I understand how big
-READ MORE-
Freeze Dry, Custom Freezer

Freeze Drying or Spray Drying? A Bacillus Perspective

  • Mike King
People will often ask me, which is better for Bacillus: freeze drying or spray drying? Unfortunately, I always have to answer with: “it depends.” I want to apologize to my sales staff in advance for not keeping things simple, but I really mean well! Here are the main factors to consider when it comes to freeze drying or spray drying Bacillus: Economics and loss prevention Market and field application method Customer
-READ MORE-
Fermentation Tanks

Supplying Quality: One Strain at a Time

  • Mike King
  • June 13, 2018
In the large-scale liquid bacterial fermentation world, there are two primary ways to grow bacteria: as individual strains or in combination with others. Here at Microbial Discovery Group, we grow one strain at a time as it has served us well over the past decade. Truth be told, if I could find a way to grow multiple strains in one batch that was produced through a consistent process, resulted high yield and a uniformity in strain ratio,
-READ MORE-
Non Chemical Solutions, Scientific Solutions, Bacillus, Custom Fermentation

The Expanding Bacillus Market

  • Mike King
  • May 16, 2018
As a follow up to the article “The Key Drivers Behind MDG’s Current Expansion,” I’d like to take this opportunity to talk more extensively about the expanding Bacillus market. Previously, I eluded that many of the current market opportunities were due to the increased demand across multiple industries. In particular, the following four main areas are what prompted Microbial Discovery Group’s (MDG) fermentation expansion:
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50+ Strains: Why We Supply

  • Mike King
  • May 4, 2018
Part of what is driving Microbial Discovery Group’s (MDG) current expansion is our desire to produce 50+ strains. Why do we want to be a Bacillus company that produces 50+ strains? Essentially: to offer the best service and products for our customers. Below are the three main reasons why our drive to produce 50+ strains is fueling our expansion. MDG’s belief in multi-strain product offerings The current Bacillus strain
-READ MORE-

The Benefits of Fermentation Redundancy

  • Mike King
  • April 18, 2018
It is an exciting day signing a multi-year fermentation contract! After the ink dries and celebrations conclude, I’ve learned it’s time to quickly review both redundancy and contingency plans for worst case scenarios. This is how we can guarantee on-time delivery. During the planning of our current expansion, I was reminded again of the importance of redundancy in safeguarding against setbacks. I had received a call from another
-READ MORE-

The Key Drivers Behind MDG’s Current Expansion

  • Mike King
  • April 13, 2018
I was recently asked the WHY behind our current expansion. When I started to break it down, there were 4 key drivers that went into the new MDG facility design: Capacity expansion Reliability via redundancy Production of 50+ strains The expanding Bacillus market Capacity expansion. This is the no-brainer for expanding. MDG was reaching 75% of our capacity, so we either had to expand or recognize there would be a future cap
-READ MORE-

Top 5 Questions You Should Ask When Considering Contract Fermentation Suppliers

  • Mike King
A successful microbial product commercialization rests on many different variables. One major component in the success equation is the role of the contract fermentation manufacturer. The manufacturing, R&D, and operational decisions they make will affect your business; it is up to you to choose the contract fermentation supplier that best fits your needs and commercialization plans. Over the years I have seen the wrong choice in suppliers
-READ MORE-

Bacillus, Distinguishing Species and Strains Part II

  • MDG
Bacillus Strain Identification: Common Problems, Questions, and Answers  In last month’s newsletter, Bacillus, Distinguishing Species and Strains Part I, we tackled the species section of the popular question “How many species and strains of Bacillus do you have in a particular product?” Now, let’s move on to strains. Can Individual Strains of Bacillus Be Distinguished? The methods described in Part I/Distinguishing Species are
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How You Count Really Counts (Part I)

  • Mike King
If you are attempting to ship your Bacillus powder products internationally to certain countries, your product may be sent for a third party plate count prior to approval. It is very important that you understand which plating method will be used to enumerate the product. If you don't understand the method and the weaknesses of each method as it relates to Bacillus spores, you may have a surprise coming. The truth is; there is no standard
-READ MORE-
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