BEPS 2017 24th Annual Meeting

September 20-22, 2017

Albany, CA


Please purchase your registration here

Agricultural Research Service - United States Department of Agriculture

Western Regional Research Center

Bioproducts Research Unit

800 Buchanan Street, Albany, CA, 94710


General Information

The 24th annual meeting of the Bio-Environmental Polymer Society will be held at the Western Regional Research Center located at 800 Buchanan Street, Albany, California on September 20-22, 2017 (Wed-Fri).

Transportation: There are two airports that service the region. The San Francisco International Airport (SFO) is located on the San Francisco peninsula and is 24 miles west of the WRRC, about a 45 minutes drive by car depending on the traffic. The Oakland International Airport (OAK) is located 18 miles south of the WRRC, about 30 minutes drive by car depending on the traffic. Both airports are also accessible by public transortation: Bay Area Rapid Transit system (BART). For those renting cars or driving their personal cars to the meeting, there is adequate parking space available at the WRRC which is a gated campus. An intercom is located conveniently outside the gate where visitors can contact the receptionist to gain access into the facility.

Further reading:

In the Area


Abstracts and Registration

Abstract submissions are now open. Please send your submission as an email attachment to Greg Glenn.

ABSTRACTS: Present your research at the premier international conference dedicated to the growth and innovation of biopolymers. Abstracts are solicited for Oral Sessions as well as the Poster Session. Please indicate whether you prefer an oral or poster presentation.

Abstract Format: The text should be single-spaced with 1” margins all around, and should be saved as MS Word or rich text format. Indicate in the top right whether the abstract is for an oral or poster presentation. The title should appear in bold capital letters, centered at the top of the page. The names and affiliations of all authors should be listed below the title, with the name of the presenting author underlined. The abstract should be sufficiently self-contained to be a useful future reference. Abstracts may contain a figure, graph or table but keep length to one page.

  • The deadline for submission of abstracts is July 31, 2017. Please indicate whether you prefer an oral or poster presentation. Oral presentations are 25 minutes followed by a 5 minute question and answer period. All presentations should be provided on a USB drive and loaded during the break periods. Standard PowerPoint software will be available on the presentation laptop. Please inform your session chair in advance if you have AV concerns so that our IT specialist can provide assistance. Poster presentations will be displayed on 4x8 feet poster boards. Please ensure posters fit within these dimensions although it is preferable that the poster length be less than 6 feet.
  • Online registration will close on August 31, 2017; on-site registration will be possible thereafter provided there is still space available. Enrollment will be limited to 100 persons so it is important to register online as soon as possible to reserve a seat.

REGISTRATION: Please register here

Conference fees will cover a book of abstracts and meeting agenda, all break refreshments and lunches. An award luncheon will take place on Thursday, September 21. Awards for outstanding research among students and scientists will be presented. Dinner on Wednesday with attendees is optional ($65). Dinner on Thursday is on your own. However, attendees are encouraged to form small groups and make their own dining choices Thursday evening at any of the more than 60 restaurants located within 2 miles of the WRRC. The Bay Area restaurants include cuisine from more than 15 countries as well as well known food chains and diners for the less adventurous.

MEMBERSHIP: All attendees of the Annual BEPS Conference will automatically receive a full membership for one year (from the start of the conference to December 31st of the following year) as part of the BEPS Annual Conference registration fee. Those who do not attend the Annual BEPS Conference may join/renew their BEPS membership by going to the registration site and selecting the BEPS Membership only option: annual membership fee ($60).


Meeting Topics

  • Commercializing sustainable materials (Industrial session)
  • Fiber-based composites
  • Biodegradability, renewable materials and recycling
  • Novel biobased nanomaterials
  • Torrefaction and carbon fillers
  • Renewable and sustainable polymers
  • Films and coatings

Confirmed Invited Research Presentations (alphabetical order)

  • Matthew B. Francis, The T.Z. and Irmgard Chu Distinguished Professor in Chemistry, Professor of Chemistry, University of California, Berkeley, CA. “Using Chemical Biology to Address Environmental Problems."
  • Joseph P. Greene, Department Chair and Professor, Department of Mechanical and Mechatronic Engineering and Sustainable Manufacturing, California State University, Chico, CA.
  • Richard A. Gross, Constellation Professor of Biocatalysis and Metabolic Engineering, Professor, Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology, Professor, Department of Biomedical Engineering. “Sustainable Routes to Biobased Epoxy Resins, Fiber Matrices, Peptides and PET Deconstruction.”
  • Steve Kelley, Department Chair and Professor, Department of Forest Biomaterials, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC.
  • Gene Lester, M.S., Ph.D., National Program Leader – Quality and Utilization of Agricultural Products –NP306; National Program Leader – Biorefining/Biofuels –NP213
  • Manjusri Misra, Professor, Biological Engineering, School of Engineering; (Department of Plant Agriculture, cross appointed), University of Guelph, Guelph, Ontario. “Biocarbon based novel green materials development: A sustainable path forward for manufacturing and energy storage”
  • Amar K. Mohanty, Premier's Research Chair in Biomaterials and Transportation; Professor, Department of Plant Agriculture and School of Engineering; Director, Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre (BDDC), Crop Science Building, University of Guelph; ON, Canada. “Circular Economy based Sustainable Bioproducts for Commercialization”
  • Jinwen Zhang, Professor, School of Mechanical and Materials Engineering, Washington State University, Pullman, WA. “Investigation of Superabsorbent hydrogels based on renewable feedstocks: Alternative crosslinking methods and potential applications.”

Industrial Sessions--Confirmed Speakers (alphabetical order)

  • Dane Anderson, CTO, Full Cycle Bioplastics
  • Aseem Das, President and CEO, World Centric
  • Kaj Johnson, Sr. Director, Product Development, Method Products
  • Molly Morse, CEO, Mango Materials, “The Commercialization of Biodegradable Bioproducts”
  • Mike Waggoner, Founder, Grow Plastics

BEPS Award Nominations for 2017

You are invited to submit nominations by July 28, 2017 for the following 2017 BEPS Annual Awards:

  • Lifetime Achievement Award
  • Outstanding Young Scientist Award
  • The Jim Hammar Memorial Service Award

The winners will be announced and awarded at the BEPS Annual Meeting and their names and photos posted on our society website. The recipient will receive a commemorative award. Please see the award criteria that must be met by the nominees, below.

INSTRUCTIONS FOR NOMINATION: Nominations should be sent via email to: Professor Amar K. Mohanty, (University of Guelph), Chair of the awards committee with the subject: BEPS Nomination. Your email should include a brief statement (<200 words) as to why the nominee should be presented with any one of the above awards. The email address of the nominee must be provided in the email. The Chair of the awards committee will contact the nominee for their CV if required. Self-nominations are also permitted. Self-nominees should send as attachment their abbreviated CV (maximum 2 pages) in their nomination email.

Award Criteria

BEPS Lifetime Achievement Award

This prestigious award is given to BEPS members that have:

  • Made outstanding contributions to scientific advancement
  • Demonstrated outstanding ability
  • Made phenomenal scholarly accomplishments and specific impact in the field of:
  1. Biopolymers
  2. Biobased materials
  3. Bioplastic/materials-related bioenergy systems

This individual will have held a position of full professor or equivalent (i.e., GS15, senior scientist) for two years or longer.

BEPS Outstanding Young Scientist Award

This award is given to individuals that have:

  • Made significant contributions to scientific advancement
  • Demonstrated outstanding ability and scholarly accomplishments in scientific research in the field of:
  1. Biopolymers
  2. Biobased materials
  3. Bioplastic/materials-related bioenergy systems

This individual holds a tenure-track position at Assistant/Associate/Full Professor level or equivalent for government or industry (i.e., GS11-GS14, scientists, and/or engineers). This individual will be under the age of 40 by December 31st 2017.

Jim Hammar Memorial Service Award

The Jim Hammar Memorial Service Award was created in 2000 in honor of W. James Hammar who worked tirelessly for eight years in helping to establish the BioEnvironmental Polymer Society (formerly Bio/Environmentally Degradable Polymer Society) before his untimely death in 1999. Jim was a Division Scientist at 3M with a long, distinguished research career and a strong passion for scientific excellence. Jim's devotion to the Society was inspirational and the standards of service and excellence he set were instrumental to the success of the Society during the early years.

The Jim Hammar Memorial Service Award is presented to a member of the BioEnvironmental Polymer Society who best exemplifies the qualities of service and dedication inspired by Jim Hammar. The Hammar award is presented to BEPS members who have been involved with the Society for at least three years.