Sunflower farms brought joy during the summer months of the pandemic. Many people found a ray of sunshine in sunflower fields, spending time outdoors with family and friends while taking photos and posting them on social media.

For some time now, David Woodburn has viewed sunflowers as hope for the future! Woodburn is CEO of Edison Agrosciences. In 2020, the St. Louis-based biotechnology startup produced its first sheet of natural rubber from sunflower leaves. The sunflower rubber was produced from sunflowers grown in a lab at the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center. Woodburn said as far as he knows, it’s the world’s first sample of natural rubber produced from sunflower leaves. Edison Agrosciences used gene-editing technology to increase a sunflower’s natural rubber production for extraction. READ MORE