Bridgestone Corp. announced that locations for a guayule research farm and associated process research center have been selected as part of a process to find alternatives to natural rubber for making tires.
This project is being accomplished by Bridgestone Americas Tire Operations (BATO) in collaboration with Bridgestone Corp. BATO has completed acquisition of a 281-acre agricultural site in Eloy, Ariz., to serve as the base of its agricultural research operation. This research farm will supply guayule for the company's process research center that is planned for nearby Mesa, Ariz.
"This was an important step in the realization of our guayule research activities, and we are excited to have found a base of operations for our researchers," said Bill Niaura, director of New Business Development for Bridgestone Americas Inc. "Every step we take brings us closer to our ultimate goal of developing new, domestic and sustainable sources for natural rubber."
The research farm will include a multi-purpose office/laboratory building, greenhouses and a farming operation that is positioned to optimize guayule as a commercial crop that produces tire-grade rubber and complements the existing agricultural landscape. Groundbreaking is anticipated in the third quarter of 2012.