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Biomanufacturer Conagen to build plant in E Hungary

U.S.-owned metabolic engineering company Conagen on Wednesday announced plans to build a HUF 15 billion plant in Kaba (eastern Hungary), creating 250 jobs, state news agency MTI reported.

Steven Chen, Conagenʼs chairman and founder, said the plant, to be constructed on the site of a former amino acid factory, will supply all of its European business partners. 

Conagen produces flavors and fragrances through fermentation. It serves the food, beverage, fragrance, nutrition, renewable materials, and biopharma markets.

Local Mayor Emma Szegi said the investment would create 250 workplaces, including jobs for researchers. Production is set to start in the second half of 2020, she added. 

The plant could buy up to HUF 50 bln of farm products a year once it starts operating at full capacity, according to Zoltán Pajna, chairman of the Hajdu-Bihar County council.

Chen told MTI that Conagen is covering the cost of the investment from its own resources, but is also in talks on potential support with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, as well as with the Hungarian Investment Promotion Agency (HIPA).