UPDATE 1-Verenium gets OK to sell Purifine in China, shares rise

Wed Oct 20, 2010 10:46am EDT

* Gets approval from the Chinese government

* Enzyme to be used as a processing aid for edible oil

* Shares rise as much as 21 percent

Oct 20 (Reuters) - Verenium Corp VRNM.O said the Chinese government authorized the sale of Purifine -- an enzyme it developed as a processing aid for the edible oil industry-- in that country, sending its shares up 21 percent.

The company said it can now sell Purifine PLC in all major oilseed processing areas of the world, including Argentina, Brazil, the United States and China.

Demand for the cooking oil in China is likely to pick up in coming months ahead of the traditional holidays early next year. [ID:nTOE69J076]

"With this important approval, we can look to further expand the market reach of our oilseed degumming process within the estimated $100 billion global edible oil market," the company said.

Verenium operates in two segments - biofuels and specialty enzymes. The company's specialty enzymes business segment develops customized enzymes for use within various markets.

Shares of the company, which have risen over 70 percent from a July year-low, were up 48 cents at $3.73 Wednesday morning on ten-times their average volume.

The stock, which had earlier risen 21 percent to an intra-day high of $3.93, was among the top percentage gainers on Nasdaq. (Reporting by Adveith Nair in Bangalore; Editing by Prem Udayabhanu)

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