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Castor cultivation firm Casterra Ag, a subsidiary of Evogene, is set to expand its production of castor seeds in Brazil and Africa after signing agreements with existing and new seed producers in the two countries.

The agreements were expected to add approximately 400 tonnes to Casterra’s total castor production this year and establish long-term production infrastructure, Evogene said on 5 March.

By Expanding the number of seed producers the company worked with was also expected to lower production risks.

“These agreements strengthen our supply chain and mark a strategic change towards diversifying our production sources,” Casterra CEO Yoash Zohar said.

Casterra has developed its high-yielding castor bean seeds from a collection of more than 300 castor lines from over 40 different geographic and climatic regions.

The company applies advanced breeding methods using Evogene’s Generator AI tech-engine, which uses plant genomics tools to enable industrial-scale production of castor beans.

The castor is used to produce oil for use in bio-based industries, such as biofuels and biopolymers.

Evogene is a leading computational biology company based in Israel.