Enzymes, which are found in all living organisms, are biodegradable proteins that catalyze biochemical reactions. Enzyme technologies can typically replace conventional chemicals, getting more out of raw materials and making production processes more efficient.
We are constantly striving to expand our markets by introducing innovations within existing markets as well as developing new applications. With a 47% share of the global enzyme market in 2010, we retained our position as the world’s largest and leading producer of industrial enzymes.
We organize our enzyme business into four areas:
Enzymes are widely used in laundry and dishwashing detergents, and account for 32% of Novozymes’ sales. Our solutions improve the performance of detergents by enabling improved stain removal, garment care, and general wash performance. Enzymes can also replace petrochemically derived ingredients that traditionally make up the bulk of detergents. Because of their unique catalytic action, enzymes are particularly useful ingredients in low-temperature detergents and concentrated detergents.
Technical enzymes are mainly used in the transformation of starch into different kinds of sugars. The largest application is enzymes for the biofuel industry, turning starch (primarily corn) into fermentable sugars. Other areas include enzymes for converting starch into syrups and enzymes for textile treatment, leather, and pulp & paper. In 2010, we launched the first commercially viable enzymes for large-scale production of biofuel from cellulosic feedstocks.
Enzymes for the food and beverage industries enhance quality and efficiency in the manufacture of products such as bread, wine, juice, beer, and alcohol. Enzymes can, for instance, be used to reduce waste by keeping bread fresh for longer, to produce trans-fat-free oils, and to reduce levels of a potential carcinogen, acrylamide, in baked or fried starchy foods.
Enzymes increase the digestibility and nutritional value of animal feed. For instance, Novozymes’ protease RONOZYME® ProAct helps animals digest the protein in their diet by supplementing the activity of their own digestive enzymes. This improved nutrient uptake leads to better feed utilization and helps the environment as fewer nutrients are released through manure.