Dutch Biotech firm KeyGene has plans to use the latex found in roots of the Dandelion-flower to produce car-tires. The current supply of rubber will be down by 20% by 2020 , so suppliers of car-tires all over the world are looking for replacements for rubber.
Dandelion-roots are too small to be viable for commercial production, by crossing a Russian Dandelion with the common Dandelion they are breeding a new variety of this beautiful ‘weed’. The new Dandelion has a bigger root-stock wich will increase the level of latex in the plant. KeyGene does not introduce foreign genes from other species into the crop.
“Many of the growers in Europe want genetically improved crops, but not GM crops. So for them we can provide an alternative. We have developed a number of technologies which enable us to very quickly genetically improve crops in a very natural way without crossing the species barriers, but still achieving the yield improvements or the resistance improvements.” said KeyGene CEO Arjen Van Tunen.source
- Dutch Biotech Firm to Make Car Tires From Hybrid Dandelions (inhabitat.com)
- Biotech plots rubber revolution (cnn.com)
- Hybrid Dandelions Could Soon Be Used to Make Car Tires (news.softpedia.com)
- Rubber From Dandelions? Talk About Flower Power. (earthtechling.com)