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Press Release

Bioethanol Production Technology Demonstration Launched in Thailand

-Aiming for Effective Use of Bagasse-
August  31,2015
New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO)

NEDO and the Office of the Cane and Sugar Board (OCSB) of the Ministry of Industry of Thailand have completed construction of a bioethanol production plant in the Kingdom of Thailand, and demonstration operations began on August 29, 2015. We will demonstrate efficient bioethanol production technology from sugarcane waste (also known as “bagasse”) generated by the sugar manufacturing process and verify that the process effectively utilizes unused resources without competing with food production through demonstration operations running until February 2017.

In the future, we aim to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by expanding the use of the technology not only in Thailand but throughout the sugarcane cultivating region of Southeast Asia.

  • Completed Bioethanol Production Plant
    Completed Bioethanol Production Plant


  • Project period: 2012-2017
  • Plant size: Bagasse processing capacity of 1,300 tons/year
  • Bioethanol production volume: 100kL/year
  • Project budget: About 1.2 billion yen (including NEDO’s contribution of about 1 billion yen)
  • Contractors: TSUKISHIMA KIKAI Co., Ltd., JFE Engineering Corporation
  • Installation location: Thai Roong Ruang Energy Co., Ltd. (TRE) in Saraburi, Thailand

1.Project Overview

In recent years in Thailand, while rapid economic growth has caused significant increases in energy consumption, measures to deal with energy supply shortages have become a pressing issue as the country is dependent on imports to satisfy the majority of demand. In order to provide a stable supply of energy, the Government of Thailand has set a policy that aims to increase bioethanol production. In addition, Thailand is proud to be one of the top producers of sugarcane in the world.

When sugar is extracted from sugarcane during the sugar manufacturing process, leftover sugarcane material called “bagasse” is generated. Bagasse is usually used as a boiler fuel at the sugar mill, but the sugar mill only requires 60-80% of the supply amount, leading to a situation where the remainder is discarded as surplus bagasse without effectively being utilized.

Against this backdrop, NEDO will demonstrate technology for producing bioethanol efficiently using surplus bagasse as a raw material, focusing on the fact that surplus bagasse is a biomass resource that doesn’t compete with food production. More specifically, bioethanol will be produced at low cost by using on-site enzyme production technology*1 using an enzyme production microorganism*2 and simultaneous saccharification and fermentation (SSF) technology*3 that have been developed by TSUKISHIMA KIKAI Co., Ltd. , Ltd. over many years . NEDO and the Thai Ministry of Industry’s Office of the Cane and Sugar Board (OCSB)*4 have completed construction of a bioethanol production plant, and demonstration operations began on August 29, 2015.

We aim to contribute to increasing the production of bioethanol in Thailand while also verifying that the process makes effective use of unused resources without competing with food production.

  • Flow chart of bioethanol production process from bagasse
    Flow chart of bioethanol production process from bagasse

2.Completion Ceremony

A completion ceremony was held at the TRE facility in Saraburi Province, Thailand on Saturday, August 29th, 2015 following the completion of construction of the bioethanol production plant. The ceremony was attended by NEDO Executive Director Munehiko Tsuchiya, Board Member, Senior Managing Executive Officer Kazuo Nakajima of TSUKISHIMA KIKAI Co., Ltd., and General Manager Yoshiki Hashimoto of JFE Engineering Corporation representing the Japanese side, and Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu Krea-ngam and Former Deputy Prime Minister Yutthasak Sasiprapa of Thailand, Secretary-General Pichai Tangchanachaianan of OCSB, Saraburi Governor Wichien Puttiwinyoo, and Chairman Suwat Asadathorn of TRE representing the Thai side.

3.Future Schedule

We will seek to establish the operational parameters for the plant through demonstration operations running until February 2017. In addition, in parallel with observing the demonstration plant’s operating conditions, we will start studies and designs of a commercial model with an eye towards commercialization.

【Reference: Glossary】

  • *1 On-site enzyme production technology: Technology to produce enzymes within the bioethanol production plant.
  • *2 Enzyme production microorganism: Acremonium cellulolyticus
  • *3 Simultaneous saccharification and fermentation (SSF) technology: Technology that allows for saccharification and fermentation within a single reaction vessel.
  • *4 Office of the Cane and Sugar Board (OCSB): An organization under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Industry of Thailand that manages the production of sugar and sugarcane.

4.For more information, please contact

(Inquiries regarding this news release)

NEDO New Energy Technology Department, Sawa
TEL: +81-44-520-5271