FRANKLINTON — The search for better and cheaper ways to make ethanol spans the globe and is consuming millions of dollars.
Only two companies seem close to success. One is in Silicon Valley. The other is on a sprawling campus surrounded by acres of farmland in Franklin County, North Carolina. So far, Franklin County is in front.
Danish, French and U.S. scientists and executives working for Novozymes are attacking a problem that has stumped their colleagues in business and academia: how to make ethanol comparable in cost or cheaper than gasoline without raising food costs.
Novozymes, a Danish company with its U.S. headquarters in Franklinton, N.C., is the world's largest producer of enzymes, living organisms essential in brewing beer, baking bread, treating wastewater and making detergents.