UF IFAS Carinata Advanced Renewables

Carinata Main Graphic

What is Carinata?

Carinata (Ethiopian mustard) is derived from the interspecific cross between B. nigra and B. oleracea. It is superior to other brassica species in terms of seed size, drought and heat tolerance, and low rates of seed shattering at maturity and harvest. Compared to other brassicas, carinata has considerably higher yields (2500-3000 kg/ha), with continuous crop improvement increasing this potential. It has high contents of erucic and linolenic acid in the extracted oil and only 6% saturated hydrocarbon. 

High erucic acid and glucosinolates make it unfit for human and animal consumption. The isothiocyanates released by the hydrolysis of glucosinolates present in carinata are potent bio fumigants that could control soil borne diseases, insects, and weeds. Additionally, resistance of carinata to diseases such as black leg and Sclerotinia stem rot is superior to that displayed by other brassicas. Overall, based on crop (and fuel) yields per unit area and the nature of its fatty acid composition, carinata is an efficient bioenergy feedstock.

Who We Are

The ARC Team is a multi-disciplinary team focused on developing Brassica carinata as a sustainable feedstock for advanced renewables including advanced jet fuel, bio-diesel, and other value added co-products as well as a high protein source for animal feed.

Through this public-private partnership, our team aim to provide a resilient advanced bioenergy and bioproducts supply chain solution to establish the bio-economy movement in the SE US.

What We Do?

Established in 2011, the UF carinata research and development program for advanced renewables is the premier carinata research program in the US. What started as small plot varietal evaluations has evolved into to a dedicated integrated carinata research program focused on crop improvement and agronomic factors affecting commercial success of this new oilseed biofuel feedstock in the Southeast US. Key research areas have included:

  1. Multi-location genotype screening for regional adaptability and yield stability
  2. Development of agronomic best management practices (planting, nutrient, pest and harvest management)
  3. Quantifying ecosystem services
  4. Crop diversification studies
  5. Carinata oil to ‘drop-in’ fuel conversion
  6. Seed meal supplementation in ruminants.

Our research has been supported through grant funding from the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer services ($1.1 million grant from 2013 to 2016). In addition, funding from Agrisoma Biosciences Inc., and Mustard 21 has contributed significantly to the introduction, testing and evaluation of carinata in Florida through multi-location yield performance testing.

Collaborative work among University of Florida (UF), Agrisoma Biosciences Inc., holder of the world’s largest carinata germplasm collection, and Applied Research Associates (ARA), FL, USA, a chemical engineering company with a patented catalytic hydrothermolysis (CH) technology for conversion of carinata oil into ‘drop-in’ bio-jet and bio-diesel fuels, has brought this crop to the forefront of advanced biofuel alternatives making it competitive with petroleum.

We manage Agrisoma’s winter nursery in Quincy, FL and assist in selection of new and improved varieties of carinata targeted for the southeast that have the following key traits:

  • Frost tolerance
  • Early maturation
  • Disease resistance/tolerance
  • Standability
  • High oil content
  • Low glucosinolate content
  • High seed yield

Through this public-private partnership, our team aim to provide a resilient advanced bioenergy and bioproducts supply chain solution to establish the bio-economy movement in the SE US.