The first ASMS graduates, class of 1993, have become various leaders around the country. One notable leader is Jason Ryder. Ryder is a scientist and chemical engineer who co-founded Miraculex, a food tech company focused on building new and exciting foods around the best tasting and healthiest sweeteners in the world: protein-based sweeteners. These sweet, plant-based proteins are found in nature, have zero calories, and are up to 40,000 times more potent than sugar without the negative health effects.
“ASMS was an incredibly influential step on my path to becoming a scientist, engineer, entrepreneur, and now professor,” Ryder says.
When ASMS opened its doors to the first class in 1990, Ryder was there, willing and ready to learn. In a past interview with ASMS, Ryder stated that from the moment he heard about ASMS from his high school guidance counselor, he knew that this was the school for him.
“ASMS helped me identify a knack for chemistry and mathematics, the combination of which planted the seeds for my career in chemical engineering,” Ryder said. “Twenty years on, I still glow with pride over the reputation that the school has built and the great students that continue to walk the grounds of the old Dauphin Way Baptist Church.”
After graduating ASMS in 1993, Ryder attended the University of Alabama and obtained his bachelors degree in Chemical Engineering. He then went on to the University of California, Berkeley to achieve his Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering. Since obtaining his Ph.D., Ryder has worked for Amyris, a renewable chemicals company, Bolt Threads, a natural materials company and now his own natural sweeteners company, Miraculex. Ryder’s commendable research and application has made his consumers not only happier, but healthier.
“From a technical perspective, I enjoy connecting great research and process development to robust design and operations through sound economics and engineering,” Ryder states. “In my recent work, I have applied this philosophy to both plant-based and microbial fermentation processes with feedstock pretreatment, product recovery, and purification. I am now focused on developing, scaling, and commercializing functional protein ingredients and products to enhance the taste, experience, and nutrition of our food.”
Ryder’s work has been so notable, in fact, he was invited to teach at his alma mater, University of California, Berkeley.
“In addition to co-founding Miraculex, I recently rejoined the U.C., Berkeley Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering Department as a Visiting Professor teaching biochemical engineering,” Ryder says. “And I am having fun!”
Since co-founding Miraculex, Ryder and his partner Alan Perlstein have been ramping up research and development, in hopes of being “everywhere sugar is.”
If you want to learn more about the benefits of Miraculex, visit their website here.
- Ryder Jason, LinkedIn
- Growing Ideas: Miracle berries’ no-cal sweetness, June 18, 2018