Lastly, on the Biofuels front, we continue to make significant progress with the optimization process at the demonstration plant in Jennings. As previously mentioned, we’ve been running various campaigns to systematically evaluate the different stages of our process.
I’m happy to report that we’ve been continually increasing our mechanical operability and reliability of the plan, which is a direct result of the learning and know-how came through this important phase.
In addition, we’ve been able to run the process in an iterative manner between our pilot scale facility in San Diego and our demo facility in Jennings under varied condition to gain better understanding and insight into the optimal operating conditions.
Importantly, as we’ve continued to see advances to our process technology we’ve also seen key improvements in enzyme production and effectiveness, which are critical components and areas of continued research.I now like to comment on our Specialty Enzyme business and recap its accomplishments since the beginning of the year. I’m happy to report that total product revenues for the first quarter of 2010 were up nearly 10% on a year-over-year basis and we continue to see signs of recovery within our core target enzyme markets which have been hampered by last year’s global economic recession. Jamie will go into more financial detail in a moment, but let me touch on the highlights since the beginning of the year. First, we together with our partner Danisco saw softening in the phytase animal feed market in the first half of 2009 due to the recessionary decline in consumer consumption. However, since late 2009, sales have increased as demand for poultry has begun to recover with improving economic conditions. Second, we also saw an increase in sales of our Fuelzyme and Veretase alpha amylases on a sequential basis as the corn ethanol industry rebound.