The BIO World Congress on Industrial Biotechnology and Ag Tech is coming to North Carolina in 2020, for the first time.
The international gathering of global corporations, entrepreneurial start-ups and others involved in the use of living cells to produce food, fuel and other useful products, will converge at the Raleigh Convention Center in Raleigh from September 20 through 23, 2020.
It’s the world’s largest event on industrial biotechnology and ag tech. As many as a thousand C-suite executives, government officials and leaders from across the globe are expected to attend the event in what is generally regarded as one of the world’s most significant ag tech hubs.
“Life science is one of our key industry sectors for meetings and conventions, and we couldn’t be more proud and excited to host the 2020 BIO World Congress on Industrial Biotechnology and Ag Tech right here in Raleigh,” said Loren Gold, executive vice president of the Greater Raleigh Convention and Visitors Bureau, which helped recruit the event to the state capital.
“This conference is a great example of how tourism can drive economic development by leveraging our region’s expertise – in this case ag tech - to showcase all that Raleigh has to offer to executives, government officials and thought leaders from all over the world.”
The annual event, hosted since 2003 by the Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO), brings thought leaders together to discuss the latest ideas in everything from biofuels that reduce carbon emissions, to biodegradable plastics made from plants, to gene-edited plants that reduce agriculture’s impact on the environment.
“The use of biotechnology to produce commodity chemicals and other similar useful products opens technological vistas as vast as human imagination,” said Sam Taylor, president of the North Carolina Biosciences Organization (NCBIO), the state’s life science affiliate with the international BIO organization. “The North Carolina Biosciences Organization is excited that leaders from throughout the field of industrial biotechnology will be visiting our state in 2020. North Carolina has much to learn from these visitors – and to show them.”
Robin Deacle, vice president of corporate communications for the North Carolina Biotechnology Center, added, “Both established global leaders and innovative, entrepreneurial companies in industrial biotech and ag tech call North Carolina home. These strengths extend across the state, giving North Carolina depth and diversity in its global life science leadership.”
This 17th annual BIO World Congress is expected to include a Start-Up Stadium, where emerging companies can engage in a Shark Tank-style forum to showcase breakthroughs in biotech and solicit potential investors to bring these technologies from the lab or field to market.
BIO’s One-on-One Partnering sessions will also continue to provide a key forum for advancing the industry, with partnering meetings taking place over the four days.
Most of the Bio World Congress sessions have been held in various U.S. cities, but the 2006 and 2011 gatherings were in Toronto and the 2009, 2013, 2015 and 2017 sessions were in Montreal.
Program participants will be able to start pitching proposals for the event’s various stages starting in early 2020, according to BIO officials.