Sumitomo Chemical and Valent BioSciences Announce Divestiture of Pace International and Future Collaboration with AgroFresh Solutions in the Postharvest Solutions Space

LIBERTYVILLE, Illinois, March 27, 2024 – Sumitomo Chemical Co., Ltd. and Valent BioSciences LLC announced today that Pace International LLC (Pace) and its operations overseas will become part of AgroFresh Solutions, Inc., a well-established leader in the postharvest solutions space. The decision to divest the Pace International business unit is part of Sumitomo Chemical’s strategic realignment efforts. Sumitomo Chemical and Valent BioSciences also plan to develop a strategic research collaboration with AgroFresh. Under this collaboration, Sumitomo Chemical and Valent BioSciences will continue working together in developing innovative new postharvest solutions and bringing them to the market with AgroFresh’s global market access

Valent Biosciences and AgroFresh are committed to providing a smooth transition to Pace’s employees, customers, and other stakeholders. The company remains committed to fulfilling its obligations and ensuring a seamless transition for all parties involved.

As a result of the acquisition of Pace by AgroFresh, the combined platform will provide its customers with a broader portfolio of postharvest products, services, technologies, and digital solutions, offering a range of innovative solutions to meet their evolving needs for productivity, quality protection, and freshness extension.

“The integration of the Pace business with AgroFresh represents a step forward for both companies, enabling the creation of a postharvest solutions platform with stronger global reach, customer service, and innovation capabilities,” said Rodrigo Cifuentes, COO of Pace. “The impressive portfolio of postharvest solutions that both companies bring together will set new standards in packinghouse efficiencies, quality, and freshness not only for its customers, but across the entire fresh produce supply chain. As we move forward together, we are confident that this partnership will bring exciting possibilities to our combined employee, customer, and partner base.”

“We are excited to integrate the Pace business into AgroFresh, as we drive forward together with a shared vision to be the postharvest company of choice for customers globally,” said Clint Lewis, CEO of AgroFresh. “By combining our products, capabilities, and technical expertise, customers will have access to an even broader portfolio of postharvest solutions and digital technologies that can be tailored to their specific crops, operations, and needs to help enhance production quality and yield and minimize unnecessary loss at every step of their supply chain.”

Furthermore, Valent BioSciences and AgroFresh intend to accelerate innovation in postharvest solutions by collaborating to develop and introduce breakthrough products, technologies, and services to address the most pressing challenges in the freshness protection space. This will be accomplished through the extensive expertise, technology pipelines, and resources of both companies.

“We are excited about this future collaboration and the benefits it can bring to the crop and food protection industry,” said Salman Mir, President and CEO of Valent BioSciences. “Combining Valent BioSciences’ expertise in the development of sustainable biorational solutions for food crops with AgroFresh’s expanding global reach and postharvest expertise will help accelerate the launch of the next generation of sustainable postharvest solutions for the long-term benefit of our customers, end users, and the environment.”

Sumitomo Chemical is strongly committed to alleviating hunger and improving nutrition by providing products, technologies, and services that improve the availability of healthy, nutritious, and attractive food crops to people around the world.

“By investing and collaborating with strategic partners in the development of conventional and biorational solutions that strengthen and protect crops, increase productivity, and reduce food loss and waste, Valent BioSciences is not only contributing to placing healthy food on tables, but also promoting long-term food security and environmental sustainability, thereby building a brighter and fresher future,” added Mir.

About Valent BioSciences LLC

Headquartered in Libertyville, Illinois, Valent BioSciences is a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Sumitomo Chemical Co., Ltd. Valent BioSciences is a worldwide leader in the development, manufacturing, and commercialization of biorational products and technologies used in the agriculture, public health, and forest health markets. The company has more than 60 years of experience bringing biorational products to market in 95 countries around the world and is ISO 9001 Certified. Valent BioSciences is also the parent company of Mycorrhizal Applications LLC, a leading supplier of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi-based products. For additional information, visit the company’s website at

About Pace International LLC

Pace International is a global leader in sustainable postharvest solutions for the fresh produce industry. In collaboration with growers, packers, and agricultural organizations, Pace develops innovative technologies that enhance, protect, and preserve fruit and vegetable quality, while reducing food waste and protecting the environment.

About AgroFresh Solutions, Inc.

AgroFresh is a global leader in postharvest quality and freshness solutions that enhance quality and extend shelf-life of fresh produce, preventing food loss and waste. AgroFresh has been innovating for more than 40 years to address fresh produce supply chain challenges from all angles with a full suite of integrated storage, packing line and digital solutions. As the pioneer of SmartFreshTM, the world’s first introduction to 1-MCP technology used to slow ripening, and UvasysTM, the world’s first laminated SO2 generating sheets that prevent fungal decay in produce and flowers, AgroFresh has what it takes to empower growers, packers and retailers to succeed in their business of delivering fresh, quality and sustainable produce from harvest to home. AgroFresh is a portfolio company of Paine Schwartz Partners, a global leader in sustainable food chain investing. To learn more about AgroFresh, visit


Houlihan Lokey served as financial advisor and Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP served as legal counsel to Sumitomo Chemical and Valent BioSciences in this transaction. Deutsche Bank served as financial advisor to AgroFresh, and Morrison & Foerster LLP served as legal counsel to AgroFresh.

Media Contacts:

John Mandel
Valent BioSciences LLC

Rochelle Ripp Schnadt
AgroFresh Inc. 262-771-0846 Email:


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