Biology is an essential technology to solve global challenges. It provides better yielding crops, medicines, diagnostics and sustainable production of materials that power our world. However, there are huge barriers to emerging economies harnessing biotechnology to meet local challenges, including inadequate supply chains making reagents unaffordable and hampering scientific progress. This situation must change to fully realise biotechnology’s potential for public good.
Beneficial Bio is a network of social enterprises run by biologists which aims to make that change. In the first instance we are developing local reagent production capacity in Africa and Latin America, starting with our first manufacturing node in Cameroon. MboaLab Biotech is a Yaoundé-based social enterprise providing skilled jobs to local biotechnologists and hands-on internships to local graduate students. By combining local production and R&D with imports from trusted manufacturers, training and specialised local technical support, it can supply Cameroonian scientists with research tools in 3 days rather than 3+ weeks and at affordable prices. It plans to expand to more countries in the near future through a social franchise model.
Beneficial Bio’s short term impact is accelerating and scaling local research. Its long term impact is increasing the agency of more people to shape biotechnology, particularly solving local problems without reliance on foreign priorities and developing resilient and autonomous supply chains for research and diagnostics.
For more information, please visit https://beneficial.bio.