Continental Pushes Forward With Dandelion Harvesting

Continental
Continental plans to transform the Russian dandelion into rubber for tires. (Photo: Continental)

New research laboratory will focus on extracting natural rubber from the dandelion plant.

Continental has officially inaugurated its 323,000 sq. ft. research facility named “Taraxagum Lab Anklam.” Located in Germany, the new laboratory is the base for research into farming and the extraction process of Russian dandelion as an alternative raw material source to the rubber tree in the tropics.

If initial test results indicate viability, the tire manufacturer is planning to introduce the raw material into production within ten years.

“We are the first tire manufacturer in the world to invest such a significant amount in industrializing dandelion rubber,” Nikolai Setzer, member of the Executive Board of Continental AG and head of the Tire division, said at the official grand opening. “We see Russian dandelion as an important alternative and complementary to conventional natural rubber from hevea brasiliensis allowing us to meet rising global demand in an environmentally compatible and reliable way.”

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