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Urban Barns’ Cubic Farming Seeks to Change the Future of Urban Farming one Head of Lettuce at a Time

Posted by AGORACOM-JC at 7:27 PM on Monday, May 25th, 2015

  • Urban Barns is using a new farming technology dubbed controlled environment agriculture, or CEA
  • No traditional crop rows and no ladders inside an Urban Barns facility, Rather, long metal frames carrying growing trays are suspended in the air, circulating underneath thousands of red, amber, and blue LED lights
  • “I certainly believe this is the way of the future,” says Hough, head of business development and a jack-of-all-trades with Urban Barns

Greg Hough is on his way to the Ritz-Carlton hotel in Montreal, Canada, delivering another order of Urban Barns’ lettuce produced in its Cubic Farming system. The lettuce was harvested only three hours ago. Drawing on ideas and concepts used in greenhouse farming, vertical farming, and traditional field farming, Urban Barns’ patent-pending Cubic Farming system reconceptualizes the future of urban farming. “I certainly believe this is the way of the future,” says Hough, head of business development and a jack-of-all-trades with Urban Barns. “We certainly have some aspect of a vertical farm, but I like to think we use space even more efficiently and effectively.”

Urban Barns is using a new farming technology dubbed controlled environment agriculture, or CEA. There are no traditional crop rows and no ladders inside an Urban Barns facility. Rather, long metal frames carrying growing trays are suspended in the air, circulating underneath thousands of red, amber, and blue LED lights. In a sporadically sunny region like Canada, sunlight poses a major impediment to year-round farming ventures. Urban Barns’ hydroponic lettuce, however, suns itself for twelve to sixteen hours each day, using both ceiling-mounted LED lights and intra-canopy LED lights. With traditional farming methods, it can take anywhere form forty-five to ninety days to grow lettuce in the region. Urban Barns’ method has cut the process down to twenty-one days.

Cubic Farming technology doesn’t just present a new way to get from seed to table; it offers an entirely unique product as well. The Urban Barn facility is a completely controlled environment. Instead of overalls and work boots, employees don lab coats, hairnets, and gloves. As a result, Urban Barns does not need to use any herbicides, pesticides, or fungicides on its plants. With many consumers opting for organics in recent years, this creates a competitive advantage. Hough recalls a recent Canadian study in which fifty percent of the organic produce that was tested came back positive for pesticide residue. Urban Barns’ lettuce would probably come back completely negative.

From a production standpoint, Urban Barns’ has cut both time and labor costs dramatically. “Due to the conveyor system, one person can do seeding, planting, and harvesting without really having to move,” Says Hough. Currently, Urban Barns employees less than ten people including its executive team. The conveyor carries the metal trays right to the employee, as a gentle breeze travels throughout the barn. Fans connected to the enclosure provide just the right amount of wind to mirror some of the environmental stresses that the plants would encounter in nature. In the wild, plants have to combat many environmental stresses, like pests, drought, floods, and wind. They become stronger in response to these stresses, leading to healthier and more robust plants.

The cost production aspects of cubic farming and lower than many people would imagine. “Our system uses ninety-six percent less water than a traditional farm would use, so our water costs are extremely low,” says Hough. The most expensive part of the operation is the machinery. “We had nothing to model it after, so we had to design, build, and optimize our machinery from scratch,” says Hough. The company currently uses fourth generation machines to carry the lettuce, microgreens, and other produce along the conveyor belt system. According to Hough, these machines cost roughly $125,000.” Although the company uses thousands of LED lights, electricity accounts for less than one-fifth of total production costs.

The LED lights are a critical component of cubic farming technology. “If you look at our Urban Barn now, you will see a pinkish and purple-ish hue emanating from it.” This color is no accident. Urban Barns has worked closely with researchers at McGill University’s Bioresource Engineering program, including Dr. Mark Lesfred, who helped NASA figure out how to feed astronauts fresh vegetables in space. McGill has helped Urban Barns develop many aspects of cubic farming technology, including the precise tone and hue of each LED light. The color of the light makes a difference in the growing process, which, according to Hough, you can taste.

Urban Barns has many items on its technological advancement agenda. In hydroponic farming, crops are seeded and grown in plugs made from a fabric-like material commonly referred to as substrate. Currently, the company is exploring the use of alternatives to the rockwool substrate it uses to grow its lettuce and microgreens. McGill researchers have tested a wide variety of potential substrate substitutes, including hemp fiber and coconut fiber.

Right now, a number of Urban Barns’ microgreens are growing in the newly developed hemp fiber. The material is actually cheaper than rockwool, and provides a major bonus benefit for the company. “Substrates don’t break down, but these fibers will,” says Hough. For the company, sustainability and environmental stewardship are a top priority. Finding a cheaper and more sustainable alternative to traditional substrates would be a landmark success for Urban Barns as well as the larger hydroponic farming industry.

The company sees itself growing in the coming years and intends to venture into other types of produce. Hough is particularly interested in produce that cannot be grown year-round in the chilly Canadian climate, like fresh strawberries in winter. Urban Barns chose lettuce as its first crop in order to provide local residents with fresher alternatives to the imported lettuce on Canadian supermarket shelves. Most of Canada’s lettuce comes from California, taking seven days to travel across the continent and another two to three days to hit store shelves. The company also sees its geographical reach expanding. “The plan is to have a barn in every major city across North America,” says Hough.

These goals are not without impediments. Hough sees two potentially significant hurdles to bringing Cubic Farming technology to the forefront of the market. Consumer education has proved to be a task for many of Urban Barns’ endeavors. Currently, the company sells its lettuce in single-serving heads and is priced at the upper end of the organic produce market. “The education process is attached to the premium that we are charging now,” remarks Hough, “but our product has a lot more to offer.” Current clientele include many upper-end hotels in the area, like The Fairmont and Hyatt, in addition to many grocers throughout the region, including IGA, the largest grocer in the country.

As for the other hurdle, Urban Barns has identified at least two other operations using a similar LED light system, including a vertical farm on Canada’s eastern coast. “I believe it is going to be a first-to-market race,” remarks Hough.

Urban Barns’ aspirations of building Cubic Farming barns across the globe are tethered by a concept that is very important to the company. “We definitely have aspirations of becoming a global company, but we always want to maintain local roots.” The local food movement has gained popularity in recent years, and has drawn in many consumers who enjoy supporting local agriculture while receiving the freshest produce possible. “The current food system is not optimal,” says Hough. “This is the future. There is no question in my mind about it”

Source: http://agfundernews.com/urban-barns-cubic-farming-seeks-to-change-the-future-of-urban-farming-one-head-of-lettuce-at-a-time.html

Urban Barns Announces New Kosher Certifications

Posted by AGORACOM-JC at 10:27 AM on Friday, May 22nd, 2015

  • Announced that it has recently received the MK Kosher certification for its Oak Leaf lettuce and three types of Micro Greens, namely Daikon, Sango/Rambo and Mizuna

MONTREAL, QUBEC, Canada, via ETELIGIS INC., 05/22/2015 – -Urban Barns Food Inc. (“Urban Barns”) (OTCQB: URBF), an innovative food producer, announced that it has recently received the MK Kosher certification for its Oak Leaf lettuce and three types of Micro Greens, namely Daikon, Sango/Rambo and Mizuna. Urban Barns Foods Inc. will continue to broaden its Kosher product line up with additional micro green varieties and herbs in the coming months. Dedicated in the cultivation of fresh vegetables throughout the year, Urban Barns Foods Inc. uses the latest in LED technology and is most noted for its proprietary Cubic Farming method.

These recent additions will add to the currently approved romaine and butterhead lettuce that obtained Kosher certification in December of 2014.

Rabbi Saul Emanuel, Executive Director of Canada’s Kosher certifier, expressed his delight over the company’s MK Kosher Certification which he feels will be beneficial for the Kosher catering and consumer industries. Furthermore, Rabbi Peretz Jaffe, the Kashrus coordinator, noted how difficult it is in finding produce that is free of infestation, and believes that the market will only gain from this recent development.

For further updates and developments, please go to:

Facebook.com/UrbanBarns

Instagram.com/UrbanBarnsFoods

Twitter.com/UrbanBarns

Youtube.com/UrbanBarnsFoods

About MK Kosher Certification:

Canada’s Kosher certifier, otherwise known as “MK” has established itself as the leading player responsible for the certification of thousands of Kosher food products bearing the MK certification mark. As Canada’s Kosher certifier, companies from across the country source out MK Kosher certification, enabling them to become part of the highly acclaimed list of enterprises that produce food products with the MK Kosher certification mark.

About Urban Barns Foods Inc.

Urban Barns uses patent pending and proprietary equipment to produce affordable leafy vegetables in a secure and controlled indoor environment. By setting up subsidiary facilities and growing locally, Urban Barns can focus on supplying any community, irrespective of the regional climate, effectively reducing shipping times and related spoilage costs. Urban Barns has the unique ability to scale and cater to the demands of all major communities. The company’s commitment to consumers is reflected through its motto, “Fresh, Local, Green”.

Forward-Looking Statements

Except for historical information contained herein, the matters set forth above may include forward-looking statements that involve certain risks and uncertainties. Words such as “may”, “could”, “anticipate”, “believe”, “estimate”, “expect”, “intend”, “plan”, and similar expressions are used to identify forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are based on the current beliefs of management, as well as assumptions made by and information currently available to management. Actual results could differ materially from those contemplated by the forward-looking statements. Urban Barns does not undertake any obligation to update any forward-looking statements and cautions investors to consider all other risks and uncertainties, including those disclosed in Urban Barns’ filings with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission.

CONTACT:

For further information, contact:

Urban Barns Foods, Inc.

Richard Groome, President and CEO

rgroome@urbanbarns.com

Tel: 514 907 4989 x 774

www.urbanbarnsfoods.com

SOURCE: Urban Barns Foods, Inc.

Associated Documentation:

Link to submission on http://www.eteligis.com
URBF_05-21-2015_888_ETL.docx

New York Stock Exchange Launches Bitcoin Price Index

Posted by AGORACOM-JC at 8:07 AM on Friday, May 22nd, 2015

  • NYXBT will represent the daily US dollar value of one bitcoin at 4pm (BST) and will be published on the NYSE Global Index Feed (GIF).
  • bitcoin price index will use data from transactions taking place on San Francisco-based bitcoin exchange Coinbase
  • Wall Street takes notice, Goldman Sachs recently participated in a $50m funding round raised by bitcoin financial services startup Circle

The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) has today announced the launch of a bitcoin price index (NYXBT).

NYXBT will represent the daily US dollar value of one bitcoin at 4pm (BST) and will be published on the NYSE Global Index Feed (GIF).

For a limited period it will also be viewable on the NYSE’s website.

Thomas Farley, NYSE group president, said in a statement:

“Bitcoin values are quickly becoming a data point that our customers want to follow as they consider transacting, trading or investing with this emerging asset class.”

He added: “As a global index leader and administrator of ICE LIBOR, ICE Futures US Dollar Index and many other notable benchmarks, we are pleased to bring transparency to this market.”

The bitcoin price index will use data from transactions taking place on San Francisco-based bitcoin exchange Coinbase.

However, a statement released by the NYSE said that it would continue to review other bitcoin exchanges to see whether they met the criteria required for inclusion in the index. “The NYSE Bitcoin suite of indices is anticipated to grow, with new indices introduced over time.”

Growing interest on Wall Street

The move comes after the Wall Street stock exchange invested in Coinbase’s $75m Series C funding round, which closed in January this year.

Speaking to CoinDesk following the announcement, Farley said: “With this investment, we are tapping into a new asset class by teaming up with a leading platform that is bringing transparency, security and confidence to an important growth market.”

The NYSE is not the only firm on Wall Street investing in the digital currency.

Multinational banking giant Goldman Sachs recently participated in a $50m funding round raised by bitcoin financial services startup Circle.

Just last month, developers at the Bank of New York Mellon Corp were revealed to be experimenting with bitcoin’s open-source code on the bank’s new corporate recognition program.

Source: http://www.coindesk.com/new-york-stock-exchange-launches-bitcoin-price-index/

Bioavailability Testing to Commence on Lexaria’s Patent-Pending Technology

Posted by AGORACOM-JC at 8:42 AM on Wednesday, May 20th, 2015

KELOWNA, BC / May 20, 2015 / Lexaria Corp. (OTCQB:LXRP) (CSE:LXX) (the “Company”) is pleased to announce it has engaged Absorption Systems LP in the USA, to begin third party in vitro tests using a human intestinal tissue model to evaluate the cannabidiol (CBD) permeability of its patent-pending technology that infuses cannabinoid compounds within lipids.

The study will assess CBD permeability achieved with our proprietary ViPova(TM) tea formulation at multiple sampling time points compared to positive and negative controls under strict experimental conditions. In vitro testing using human tissue models can be preferable to animal testing since human cells can be used directly to provide species-specific permeability results.

“Although we cannot know in advance the outcome of such tests, the results have the potential to materially affect future outcomes for the Company,” said John Docherty, president of Lexaria. “We have a wealth of anecdotal evidence from our growing ViPova(TM) customer base extolling the marked effects of our CBD-infused tea and we look forward to the outcome of this study to help quantify this in detail.”

It is generally accepted in pharmacological sectors that the bioavailability of any active ingredient is one of the most important factors determining its effects on the body. Enhanced bioavailability can be extremely useful and is highly valued for any useful molecule, including CBD and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).

Lexaria expects to begin this testing in the near future and will report results when they are available in due course, expected within the next 3-4 months.

About Lexaria

Lexaria is a food sciences company focused on the delivery of cannabinoid compounds procured from legal, agricultural hemp, through gourmet foods based upon its proprietary infusion technologies. www.lexariaenergy.com

About ViPova(TM)

ViPova(TM) uses only legal CBD oil extracts, grown from agricultural hemp in locations where it is legal to do so, in ViPova(TM)-branded tea. ViPova(TM)uses its patent-pending process to infuse concentrated amounts of CBD within lipids in its tea, providing more bioactivity and comfort to the body during the absorption process. Only ViPova(TM) has this ground-breaking technology for CBD/lipid infusion. www.vipova.com

About Absorption Systems

Absorption Systems assists pharmaceutical, biotechnology and medical device companies in identifying and overcoming ADMET (Absorption, Distribution, Metabolism, Excretion and Toxicity) barriers in the development of drugs, biologics and medical devices. The company’s mission is to continually develop innovative research tools that can be used to accurately predict human outcomes or to explain unanticipated human outcomes when they occur. Absorption Systems, with facilities near Philadelphia, PA, in San Diego, CA, and in Panama, serves customers throughout the world. For information on the company’s comprehensive contract services and applied research programs, please visit www.absorption.com.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT:

Lexaria Corp.
Chris Bunka
Chairman & CEO
(250) 765-6424

FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

This release includes forward-looking statements. Statements which are not historical facts are forward-looking statements. The Company makes forward-looking public statements concerning its expected future financial position, results of operations, cash flows, financing plans, business strategy, products and services, competitive positions, growth opportunities, plans and objectives of management for future operations, including statements that include words such as “anticipate,” “if,” “believe,” “plan,” “estimate,” “expect,” “intend,” “may,” “could,” “should,” “will,” and other similar expressions are forward-looking statements. Such forward-looking statements are estimates reflecting the Company’s best judgment based upon current information and involve a number of risks and uncertainties, and there can be no assurance that other factors will not affect the accuracy of such forward-looking statements. Access to capital, or lack thereof, is a major risk and there is no assurance that the Company will be able to raise required working capital. Factors which could cause actual results to differ materially from those estimated by the Company include, but are not limited to, government regulation, managing and maintaining growth, the effect of adverse publicity, litigation, competition and other factors which may be identified from time to time in the Company’s public announcements and filings. There is no assurance that the medical marijuana, CBD sector, or alternative health businesses will provide any benefit to Lexaria, or that the Company will experience any growth through participation in these sectors. There is no assurance that any planned corporate activity, business venture, or initiative will be pursued, or if pursued, will be successful. There is no assurance that any cannabinoid-based product will promote, assist, or maintain any beneficial human health conditions whatsoever. There is no assurance that the cannabinoid/lipid infusion technology will provide any increase in bioavailability to any individual person, nor that bioavailability testing will produce any positive result. No statement herein has been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). ViPova(TM) products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

The CSE has not reviewed and does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

Lexaria Intellectual Property Update

Posted by AGORACOM-JC at 8:24 AM on Friday, May 15th, 2015


KELOWNA, BC / May 15, 2015 / Lexaria Corp. (OTCQB: LXRP) (CSE: LXX) (the “Company”) provides the following update and information regarding its patent-pending technology; how it relates to the delivery of certain active ingredients such as CBD and THC, and how it relates also to market demand.

Lexaria has caused to be filed on April 28, 2015 and May 14, 2015, the latest in a line of provisional patent applications with the United States Patent and Trademark Office regarding its technology that were originally filed beginning in June, 2014. Lexaria’s new patent-pending technology is directed to food and beverage compositions infused with cannabinoids – e.g., THC and/or CBD – that provide enhanced cannabinoid oral bioavailability. We expect the United States Patent and Trademark Office to publish our provisional patent applications roughly in December 2015.

Lexaria’s proprietary process infuses lipids within foods and beverages with cannabinoids and produces compositions with synergistically enhanced cannabinoid absorption and bioavailability. The cannabinoid infused food and beverage compositions have the added benefit of masking the inherent unpleasant taste of cannabinoids to allow for better patient compliance with therapeutically administered cannabinoids.

It is important to understand certain facts:

Smoked or inhaled cannabinoids have reported bioavailabilities ranging from 2-56%, with an average of about 30% (Huestis (2007) Chem. Biodivers. 4:1770-1804; McGilveray (2005) Pain Res. Manag. 10 Suppl. A:15A – 22A). This variability is mainly due to differences in smoking dynamics. Cannabinoids that are absorbed through the mucous membranes in the mouth (buccomucosal application) have bioavailabilities of around 13% (Karschner et al. (2011) Clin. Chem. 57:66-75). By contrast, when cannabinoids are ingested, bioavailability is typically reduced to about 6% (Karschner et al. (2011) Clin. Chem. 57:66-75).

Lexaria’s patent-pending cannabinoid lipid-infusion technology is based in part on the goal of achieving much higher cannabinoid bioavailability than conventional means of oral cannabinoid ingestion.

Oral bioavailability into or approaching the range typical of smoked or inhaled cannabinoids would be potentially disruptive to the entire medical marijuana sector because it would offer patients an efficient option to reduce or even eliminate the need for smoking or inhalation delivery while simultaneously improving conventional edible cannabinoid formats.

To this end, the Company will undertake certain laboratory testing in the coming months to further characterize potentially transformative aspects of the technology and will report the outcome upon completion.

Benefits of the patent-pending technology, include:

1) A positive social health outcome through reduction of smoking of cannabinoids;
2) Improved confidence in consistent delivery of THC or CBD through oral ingestion;
3) Lower cost to consumers relative to conventional edible formats through higher rate of active ingredient delivery;
4) Easy and convenient active ingredient delivery through many readily available common everyday foods;
5) A disruptive competitive advantage for Lexaria versus any company that delivers THC or CBD through any other format, including traditional smoking.

By their nature, new inventions are unpredictable and not always entirely understood in advance. Many complex technologies are being pursued by the broader food and drug industries in relation to more effective delivery of drugs and other ingredients because their traditional oral bioavailability may be poor. Solid lipid nanoparticles, for example, have demonstrated improvements in bioavailability of some Class II, III, and IV drugs as much as 2-25 fold as seen below:

“The US FDA recommended high fat meals for food-effect studies because such fatty meals (800-1000 cal, 50%-65% fat, 25%-30% carbohydrates and 15%-20% proteins) affect GI physiology and maximize drug transfer into the systemic circulation.” (Food and Drug Administration, Guidance for industry: food-effect bioavailability and fed bioequivalence studies, food and drug administration. www.fda.gov)

Maximizing bioavailability is a common aim throughout the food, pharmaceutical and drug industries since efficiencies in delivering active ingredients also deliver many benefits.

About Lexaria

Lexaria is a food sciences company focused on the delivery of cannabinoid compounds procured from legal, agricultural hemp, through gourmet foods based upon its proprietary infusion technologies. www.lexariaenergy.com

About ViPova(TM)

ViPova(TM) uses only legal hemp oil extracts, grown from agricultural hemp in locations where it is legal to do so, in ViPova(TM)-branded tea. ViPova(TM) uses its patent-pending process to infuse concentrated amounts of CBD within lipids in its tea, providing more bioactivity and comfort to the body during the absorption process. Only ViPova(TM) has this ground-breaking technology for CBD/lipid infusion. www.vipova.com

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT:

Lexaria Corp.
Chris Bunka
Chairman & CEO
(250) 765-6424

FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

This release includes forward-looking statements. Statements which are not historical facts are forward-looking statements. The Company makes forward-looking public statements concerning its expected future financial position, results of operations, cash flows, financing plans, business strategy, products and services, competitive positions, growth opportunities, plans and objectives of management for future operations, including statements that include words such as “anticipate,” “if,” “believe,” “plan,” “estimate,” “expect,” “intend,” “may,” “could,” “should,” “will,” and other similar expressions are forward-looking statements. Such forward-looking statements are estimates reflecting the Company’s best judgment based upon current information and involve a number of risks and uncertainties, and there can be no assurance that other factors will not affect the accuracy of such forward-looking statements. Access to capital, or lack thereof, is a major risk and there is no assurance that the Company will be able to raise required working capital. Factors which could cause actual results to differ materially from those estimated by the Company include, but are not limited to, government regulation, managing and maintaining growth, the effect of adverse publicity, litigation, competition and other factors which may be identified from time to time in the Company’s public announcements and filings. There is no assurance that existing capital is sufficient for the Company’s needs or that it will need to attempt to raise additional capital. There is no assurance that any planned corporate activity, business venture, or initiative will be pursued, or if pursued, will be successful. There is no assurance that any cannabinoid-based product will promote, assist, or maintain any beneficial human health conditions whatsoever. There is no assurance that the cannabinoid/lipid infusion technology will provide any increase in bioavailability to any individual person. There is no assurance that patent-pending applications will result in granted patents, or that competing companies, in their normal course of business, might not introduce other unrelated inventions superior to the Company’s own. No statement herein has been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). ViPova(TM) products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

The CSE has not reviewed and does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

US DOJ believes Silicon Metal a critical ingredient

Posted by AGORACOM-JC at 11:18 AM on Thursday, May 14th, 2015

Globe Specialty, FerroAtlantica Face Extended Scrutiny on Planned Merger

By William McConnell Follow|05/12/15 – 05:27 PM EDT

NEW YORK The Deal) –Globe Specialty Metals(GSM) faces an extended U.S. Department of Justice review of its $3.1 billion acquisition of rival Grupo FerroÁtlantica. Miami-based Globe disclosed the DOJ’s second request for information in a filing to the Securities and Exchange Commission Monday.

The combination with Madrid-based FerroÁtlantica would create the world’s largest producer of silicon metals, which are critical ingredients for making aluminum, solar panels and other products. FerroÁtlantica is wholly owned by Spain’s Grupo Villar Mir, which will own 57% of the new London-headquartered, Nasdaq-listed company after the merger, with current Globe shareholders holding 43%.

The companies said they continue to expect the transaction to close in the fourth quarter of 2015 despite the DOJ’s decision to extend the investigation beyond the initial 30-day waiting period. Regarding the antitrust investigation, the companies said in their SEC filing that they “continue working cooperatively with the DOJ as it conducts its review of the proposed business combination.”

The companies’ merger agreement contains few antitrust safeguards, indicating little concern for antitrust risk. FerroÁtlantica is not entitled to a reverse breakup fee if the deal is terminated due to failure to obtain regulatory approval. The parties are not obligated to accept divestitures or other conditions sought by regulators if such as move would cause a material adverse effect on their businesses.

Globe Specialty Chairman Alan Kestenbaum side-stepped an analyst’s question about the companies’ possible overlaps during a Feb. 23 conference call to announce the deal. “This has been analyzed and we look forward to working with the regulators and are confident that we’ll be able to get through the process successfully,” was all he would say when asked about potential competition issues raised by the merger during a Feb. 23 conference call.

Globe Specialty maintains that its business is highly competitive. According to the company’s 10-K its primary competitors in the silicon metal and silicon-based alloy markets are Elkem AS, owned by China National Bluestar Group, and FerroAtlantica. There are other significant competitors, though, according to the company, including Rima Industrial and Ligas de Alumino as well as producers in China and the former republics of the Soviet Union. The company also said it faces “continual threats from existing and new competition.”

Nevertheless, Globe Specialty characterized itself as a “highly efficient, low-cost producer” which it attributed in part to manufacturing processes that allow it to capture most of its production by-products for reuse or resale. It also has the capacity to react to changes in market demand by switching production between silicon-based alloy and silicon metal production at low cost.

The company, in its 10-K, did acknowledge that new competitors face difficulty entering the market because of a three- to five-year lead time to obtain the necessary governmental approvals followed by construction time and the need to secure supply sources for raw materials and energy. Those barriers to entry could make the DOJ skeptical that any competition lost by the merger could be replaced by new players in the market.

Source: http://www.thestreet.com/story/13149101/1/globe-specialty-ferroatlantica-face-extended-scrutiny-on-planned-merger.html

CLIENT FEATURE: Xylitol (XYL:TSX-V) Natural Sweetener Co with $8.6M in Revenues for 2014

Posted by AGORACOM-JC at 12:09 PM on Wednesday, May 13th, 2015

Financial Highlights

  • $8,600,000 in revenue for 2014 up from $6,500,000 in 2013

Marquee Customers Include:

Strong Institutional Ownership

  • Dundee Corp 29%
  • SunOpta BioProcess Inc. 26%

What is Xylitol you ask?

  • Xylitol is a sugar alcohol – and no, that doesn’t mean there’s alcohol in it. It’s also known as a polyol. Sugar alcohols contain fewer calories and fewer carbohydrates than other sweeteners. Replacing sugar with xylitol can be helpful if you’re trying to lose weight or even to help prevent weight gain.

What does xylitol taste like?

  • Xylitol is a white crystalline granule that looks and tastes like sugar. The good news is that it doesn’t have the negative side effects associated with sugar. Xylitol is low-calorie, low-carb, diabetic safe and we think it’s guilt free!

Where does your xylitol come from?

  • Xyla brand xylitol is extracted from North American grown hardwood trees, and it’s delicious. We believe the practices employed in the harvesting and processing of our xylitol are ecologically sustainable. Xylitol is also naturally occurring in many fruits and vegetables. Did you know the human body makes about 15 grams of xylitol per day?

Xylitol Canada, Inc. emerged in 2004 as a reseller and distributor of Xylitol and Xylitol products. Based in Toronto, Ontario, the company continued to grow and develop additional brands under the names Sweet Diabetic Delight and Xylitol Canada. Realizing the market potential for high quality, readily available, and consistently priced Xylitol and Xylitol products, the Company broadened its strategic vision in 2009.

Realizing that the void in the Xylitol market was based on inadequate supply and lack of awareness, the company initiated a 2-tier business expansion plan that sought to solve both of these problems. With the vision of a full scale North American Xylitol production facility as a critical element of this strategy, the Company reached out to the Capital markets and formally went public in April of 2010. With the capital base to aggressively address the marketplace, the company immediately began executing its business plan.

Xylitol In The Media

Daytime Toronto – Rogers TV (Aug 2013) – Julie Reid from Xylitol Canada appears with Mari Loewen from Anna Magazine to make some delicious recipes using North American hardwood derived Xyla xylitol.

Daytime Ottawa – Rogers TV (June 2013) - Xylitol Canada’s Julie Reid and naturopath Helene Huot discuss the benefits of Xyla xylitol and share great summer recipes using Xyla.

Is Sugar Toxic? – 60 Minutes (May 4th, 2013) – Sugar is the most addictive substance on earth. It’s also the most dangerous and toxic substance anyone can consume. Sugar has similar affects on the brain like cocaine. Heart disease, cancer, diabetes type II and many more are linked to processed sugar.

Sugary Drinks Linked To 180,000 Deaths Worldwide – CNN (March 19, 2013) – “One in every 100 deaths from obesity-related diseases is caused by drinking sugary beverages,” says study author Gitanjali Singh, a postdoctoral research fellow at the Harvard School of Public Health.

Avalon Rare Metals Announces 1st Online Shareholder Q&A With Don Bubar

Posted by AGORACOM-JC at 11:29 AM on Tuesday, May 12th, 2015

We are happy to announce the first Avalon Rare Metals Q&A in which investor questions posted to the Avalon HUB will be incorporated into an upcoming interview.

Format of the Q&A is as follows:

1. To post your question, please use the subject line “Q&A”.

2. When you post your question, please check “Question For AGORACOM’ box.

Register Now!

3. Avalon can’t respond to questions related to current, present or future performance of its share price, nor can they provide non-disclosed material information that would violate securities laws.

4. To this end, please try to review questions already posted by fellow shareholders to avoid duplication

5. Please limit your questions to a maximum of 3

6. Deadline for submitting questions is Tuesday May 19th (end of business day).

Thank-you and we look forward to your participation in our first Avalon Rare Metals Q&A.

Regards,

AGORACOM

Newnote Financial Acquires 100% Interest in Revenue Generating Online Store Builder PayIvy.com

Posted by AGORACOM-JC at 9:11 AM on Tuesday, May 12th, 2015

Vancouver, British Columbia–(May 12, 2015) – Newnote Financial Corp. (CSE: NEU) (OTCQB: NWWTF) (FSE: 1W4) (the “Company”), is pleased to announce the Company has acquired PayIvy.com, a platform for merchants selling digital products and digital downloads such as e-books, software, graphic designs, web designs and intellectual property. Newnote paid CDN $260,000 in cash and stock.

Key Acquisition Highlights:

  • Revenue Generating
  • Closest competitor Fiverr.com raised $30 million in a Series C round led by Qumra Capital with participation from existing investors Bessemer Venture Partners and Accel Partners in 2014
  • Over 10,000 Merchants strong growing by over 1000 new merchants weekly
  • PayIvy has shown great growth in its first six months, reaching an Alexa ranking of 73,000
  • Processing over $200,000 per month in sales while currently experiencing hyper-growth

PayIvy.com is a multi-vendor website enabling merchants to register and start selling digital products and services online within minutes. Merchants can instantly accept credit cards through PayPal as well as accepting various crypto-currencies including Bitcoin, Litecoin and Omnicoin as payment methods via Coinpayments.

Merchants can sell and publish e-books with more options to protect their digital content from online piracy. A licensing system is available for vendors to sell their software with Hardware ID locking to prevent unauthorized software distribution and sharing. Transactions and sales are recorded on-site with a messaging system for all users. A simple fraud system is added for PayPal payments helping sellers to identify fraudulent users and block them from purchasing. Custom fields are also available for sellers to collect data from customers. Other features include an advanced affiliate program for sellers looking to promote their products.

Newnote is pleased to have PayIvy.com co-founders Lode Kennes from Belgium, Ton Manh Nguyen and David Snyder from Calgary, Alberta to continue with PayIvy daily operations and development. Lode is an advanced web developer specializing in PHP, C#, ASP .NET, Java, Python, HTML, CSS, SQL and Visual Basic. David is the lead interface designer at PayIvy.com and active designer of Coinpayments.net.. Ton will continue to work with developers to maintain and maximize revenue potential on PayIvy.com.

Lode Kennes states: “Although we have experienced great growth in the past six months, PayIvy is yet to show its full potential. With the investment from Newnote, PayIvy will be able to serve more sellers with features that no other site can offer.”

CEO & President of Newnote, Paul Dickson, reports: “This is a very strategic acquisition for Newnote, each of our services will be integrated into one another utilizing our APIs. Merchants can now setup shopwith PayIvy.com, Accept payments through Coinpayments.net, Convert Bitcoin-to-Cash on Cointrader.net and transfer the funds into their bank account or remit overseas instantly. Newnote’s portfolio of Bitcoin centric assets now has a combined total of over 60,000 active users engaged in various crypto-currency activities while processing nearly $2,000,000 per month in Bitcoin transactions. We haven’t fully monetized each of our services during this rapid growth period, plans to do so are imminent.”

PayIvy can be accessed at: http://www.payivy.com

About Newnote Financial Corp.

Newnote Financial Corp. is pioneering innovative crypto-currency and Bitcoin related software products and services geared at the growing business segment of this bourgeoning market. The Company owns and operates the Cointrader.net Bitcoin Exchange, PayIvy.com Online Store Builder, CoinExchange Android App, BitVisits.com Paid-to-Surf Advertising Platform, Bitcoin ATM Machines in London, Tokyo and Vancouver in addition to several other crypto-currency related assets. Newnote has positioned itself to be a leading contender in delivering opportunities to startup businesses world-wide and continues to create new opportunities for its clients and its shareholders. Newnote has a clear vision on the direction in which this new and unique business is headed and is continually adjusting and adopting new business practices in both technology and the policies & procedures required by banks and securities regulators.

Newnote Financial Contact Information

Paul Dickson
President, CEO & Director
Newnote Financial Corp.
CSE: NEU; OTCQB: NWWTF; FSE: 1W4
Suite 709-700 West Pender Street
Vancouver, BC V6C 1G8
Phone: 604-229-0480
Fax: 604-685-3833
web: www.newnote.com
Bitcoin exchange: www.cointrader.net
Online store builder: www.payivy.com
Payment processing: www.coinpayments.net

Forward-Looking Information:

This press release may include forward-looking information within the meaning of Canadian securities legislation, concerning the business and trading in the common stock of Newnote Financial Corp. The forward-looking information is based on certain key expectations and assumptions made by the company’s management. Although the company believes that the expectations and assumptions on which such forward-looking information is based are reasonable, undue reliance should not be placed on the forward-looking information because the company can give no assurance that they will prove to be correct. These forward-looking statements are made as of the date of this press release and the company disclaims any intent or obligation to update publicly any forward-looking information, whether as a result of new information, future events or results or otherwise, other than as required by applicable securities laws.

The CSE has not reviewed, approved or disapproved the content of this press release.

SKYPE INTERVIEW: Urban Barns Foods (URBF: OTCQB) Takes Cubic Farming to Drought Stricken California

Posted by AGORACOM-JC at 1:47 PM on Friday, May 8th, 2015

URBF: OTCQB

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What is Cubic Farming?

  • A revolution in Controlled Environment Agriculture (CEA)
  • Propriety, patent-pending, looped conveyer growing system
  • Advanced uniform LED technology
  • Automated watering and nutrients
  • Optimal conditions for crops to transition from seeds to maturity through pre-set germination, growing and harvesting phases.

Why Urban Barns Foods?

  • Unknown story due to no previous IR = best opportunity to get in
  • Tier-1 Customers = Commercial Acceptance
  • 320 square feet = 3 acres of farm production
  • $5M Market Cap = Great Risk/Reward
  • Watch this video clip to see what production looks like
  • Watch this video clip to see what the Executive Chef at Chateau Frontenac has to say

Hub On AGORACOM / Corporate Profile / Watch Interview!