Friday, June 25, 2010 BioplasticsFKuR Plastics Corp. is launching several heat resistant biopolymers with the brand name Biograde®. Developed particularly for technical applications, Biograde® can be processed on conventional plastics processing machines without the need for modifications.
Biograde® resins are cellulose based polymers and are thus mainly composed of natural resource materials. Especially designed for injection moulding applications they are a recent result of FKuR’s and Fraunhofer UMSICHT’s research work which combines renewable base polymers with outstanding additives and compatibilizers processed in FKuR’s dedicated bio compounding process.
Friday, June 11, 2010 BiodegradableStora Enso is meeting the growing demand for biodegradable packaging solutions by expanding its selection of biopolymer-coated packaging boards. Biodegradable coating options are available for a number of the company's board grades for use in cups, plates, trays and folding cartons. The paper cups used at the Finnish Pavillion at the current World Expo in Shanghai are made from biodegradable Cupforma board.
"The World Expo in China is a great place to present bio cups to the world as the result of our pioneering work in developing fully biodegradable packaging materials," says Juha Kiviranta, Sales and Marketing Director at Stora Enso Liquid and Food Service Board. The Stora Enso Cupforma board family offers biodegradable material options for drinking cups for all major end uses, such as cold and hot drinks, ice cream and yoghurt. Cupforma Classic Bio meets the compostability requirements of the EN 13432 and ASTM 6400 standards.
Biodegradable food trays made from Trayforma Performance Bio
Paperboard trays made from Trayforma Performance Bio can be used for packaging fresh and chilled foods that are not heated in their packages. Vegetables, salads and sandwiches are typical examples. All boards in Stora Enso's biodegradable board offering are approved for direct food contact.
"When it comes to brand owners, the use of biodegradable packaging is typically based on the company's core values and brand strategy. The use of natural ingredients, sustainability, purity and high quality are brand values that can be enhanced by biodegradable packaging," says Kiviranta. "Our customers in the converting industry are building biodegradable product families. Our wide selection of material options provides a good basis for that."
Patented biopolymer coating technology
Stora Enso has developed biopolymer coatings for years. "Our patented biopolymer coating technology has enabled us to develop the barrier and other material properties so that the requirements of various end use applications can be met," says Kiviranta. "Based on our experience from our long-time cooperation with cup producers, converting biopolymer-coated boards is more demanding than usual but doesn't require investments in new machinery."
Polymer coating gives the desired barrier properties for the package, protecting against oxygen, humidity, odour, taste and light and resulting in prolonged shelflife. The choice of coating depends on what kind of barrier is required. Biopolymer coatings provide an oxygen, moisture and grease barrier.
Biopolymer-coated paperboard breaks down to humus and CO2 in industrial composting. In recycling schemes, biodegradable products are primarily intended for the collection of materials for industrial composting. Collection schemes depend on local collection conditions. Stora Enso's boards can also be safely collected and recycled separately or together with other paper and board products.
Cereplast, Inc has introduced 11 new grades of Cereplast Compostables(R) resins to meet the increasing demand for improved productivity across all conventional plastic processing techniques while also improving physical property performance.
"Now with the oil spill resulting in substantial environmental damage down in the Gulf of Mexico, the need for reduced dependency on petroleum is more evident than ever - Cereplast Compostables(R) resins are a simple solution that companies can apply to their existing manufacturing processes while creating new brand opportunities and more eco-friendly options for consumers," says Founder, Chairman and CEO of Cereplast, Inc., Frederic Scheer.
Mr. Scheer continued, "The plastics industry is one of the most successful industries in history, and has grown to $2.5 trillion a year in roughly 50 years. Now, with price of oil rising and concerns about petroleum-based products, we can expect to see consumers and business alike drive the growth of bioplastics in a faster time frame. This can be accelerated even further through legislation, such as we are seeing in California, which can restrict the use of traditional plastics and force business to adapt to new standards."
Aside from the need to reduce landfill disposal and reduce carbon emissions, which is one of the main causes of global warming, the massive oil spill in the Gulf has sparked renewed interest in greener alternatives to fossil fuels. Businesses and consumers are now seeking products that are environmentally friendly, opening the door for bioplastics - the greener alternative to traditional, petroleum-based plastics.
Cereplast, Inc. is actively producing bioplastic resins for use in products ranging from tableware and cutlery to toys and healthcare/hygiene products, bottles/containers, bags, packaging, gift cards, printed displays, straws, even pipes, conduits, and many other applications. The 11 new Cereplast Compostables(R) resin grades include:
- Compostable 1001 - Designed to have an excellent balance of toughness, rigidity and processability. Can be processed on existing conventional electric and hydraulic reciprocating screw injection molding machines.
- Compostable 1006 - Designed to have an excellent balance of high stiffness, toughness, and processability. Can be processed on existing conventional electric and hydraulic reciprocating screw injection molding machines.
- Compostable 1013 - Designed to have an excellent balance of low stiffness, toughness, and processability. Can be processed on existing conventional electric and hydraulic reciprocating screw injection molding machines.
- Compostable 2001 - Designed to have an excellent balance of toughness, rigidity and processability. Can be processed on existing blow molding machines. Specially designed for bottles, containers, and similar type applications.
- Compostable 3000 - Designed to have an excellent balance of puncture strength, toughness, and processability. Can be processed on existing blown film extrusion machines. Recommended for extrusion of blown film for applications such as, liners, bags, packaging, overwrap, etc.
- Compostable 4001 - Designed to have an excellent balance of strength, toughness, and processability. Can be processed on existing extrusion machines. Recommended for extrusion coating applications, such as, cups, plates, containers, boxes, cardboard, etc.
- Compostable 5001 - Designed to have an excellent balance of strength, toughness, and processability. Can be processed on existing extrusion machines. Recommended for foam extrusion of sheets that can be thermoformed in meat trays, plates, egg cartons, clamshells, etc.
- Compostable 6000 - Designed to have an excellent balance of strength, toughness, and processability. Can be processed on existing sheet extrusion and thermoforming machines. Recommended for extrusion and thermoforming applications such as, cups, plates, bowls, trays, clamshells, containers, packaging, sheets, displays, etc.
- Compostable 6001 - Designed to have an excellent balance of strength increased toughness, and processability. Can be processed on existing sheet extrusion and thermoforming machines. Recommended for extrusion and thermoforming applications, such as, cups, plates, bowls, trays, clamshells, containers, packaging, sheets, displays, etc.
- Compostable 6015 - Designed to have an excellent balance of strength, toughness, and processability. Can be processed on existing sheet extrusion machines. Recommended for extrusion applications, such as, gift cards, sheet, printed displays, and other sheet applications.
- Compostable 7003 - Designed to have an excellent balance of strength, toughness, and processability. Can be processed on existing sheet extrusion machines. Recommended for extrusion applications, such as, straws, profiles, boards, sheets, pipes, conduits, etc.
SOURCE: Cereplast, Inc.
Cereplast recently entered into new global distribution agreements with a number of companies, including multi-billion dollar corporations Ashland Distribution, a commercial unit of Ashland Inc. (NYSE: ASH) and Bunge Alimentaris, a Brazilian subsidiary of Bunge Limited, a contributing factor to the rise in shipment estimates. To support growing sales volume, the Company recently opened a new state-of-the-art production facility in Seymour, Indiana. The move to the new plant, which was relocated from Southern California, also has significantly reduced real estate and utility costs for the company.
"Distributors are increasingly utilizing bio-plastics as an alternative to petroleum-sourced materials in order to meet growing consumer and industrial demand for economically and ecologically sound, 'green' products," said Frederic Scheer, Chairman and CEO of Cereplast, Inc. "Our new advanced facility provides us with the capacity and scalability to handle climbing volume. We estimate that this facility, running at full capacity, will be able to produce approximately 80 million pounds of bioplastic resin per year."
Mr. Scheer added, "We estimate that the expected rise in volume will result in our 2010 revenues increasing by a minimum of 190 percent. The bulk of the shipments are expected to be delivered in the third and fourth quarter."
SOURCE: Cereplast, Inc.
Wednesday, June 09, 2010 Packaging
The Fruitplast product has been pioneered at the University Sain Malaysia (USM) and made from the skins of tropical fruits such as bananas, rambutans and chempedak.
Team leader professor Hanafi Ismail said the idea to produce plastic from fruit waste came about because of the perceived potential for bio-degradable plastic which is forecast to grow by up to 30 per cent a year.
“Commercial bio-degradable plastic such as polylactic acid (PLA) and polycaprolacton (PCL) that are available in the West are at least eight times as expensive as the petroleum-based, non-biodegradable plastic such as polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP),” said the professor. “We have developed a study to produce bio-degradable plastic using waste products from fruits to reduce costs but which can compete with the quality of the commercial plastics that are currently available in the market.”
Fruitplast is estimated to be 10 per cent cheaper than the petroleum-based commercial plastics (PE, PP) and is able to biodegrade within three to six months, said the team.
“This innovation also has huge commercial prospects not only in Malaysia but also world-wide because it is based on the concept of sustainability, is cheap and excellent for the packaging industry,” added Hanafi. “The durability of the plastic also has met the standards that have been determined and if it is not exposed to the elements (soil and weather), Fruitplast can remain in its original condition for up to two years.”
The university, which funded the project, said Fruitplast won a Gold medal at the International Invention, Innovation and Technology Exhibition (ITEX) 2010, held in Kuala Lumpur recently.
Wednesday, June 09, 2010 PackagingNew biodegradable metallised and laminated films can provide differentiation at point-of-sale along with high moisture and oxygen barrier properties for dry good products such as nuts and biscuits with a premium positioning, claims Innovia Films.
The manufacturer said that the extension of its cellulose-based packaging range, NatureFlex NK, includes a metallised version, NKM, a coloured film NKC and a solid white film NK White, with inherent deadfold and anti-static properties, high gloss and resistance to grease and oil. Compostable packaging materials typically have been used with fresh and chilled food products where their permeability proved an advantage but the coating on the NK range allows them to be used to package dried foods, explained Alasdair McEwen, Innovia Films’ market manager - biscuits & bakery. And he told BakeryandSnacks.com that the metallic and laminate structures in combination with the supplier’s coating technology do not interfere with the industrial or domestic compostability of the packaging.
The manufacturer said its NatureFlex films are certified to meet the European EN 13432 and American ASTM D6400 composting norms, and have also been confirmed as suitable for emerging 'waste to energy' techniques such as anaerobic digestion. McEwen said the new NK range, in line with all biopolymers, is more costly than conventional materials, but but that they are highly applicable for the more premium, organic or Fairtrade end of the market. And he points out that the film will allow manufacturers to combine sustainable packaging with ethical products to respond to the increasing consumer commitment to doing the right thing.
The flexible NK range has similar properties to that of co-extruded Oriented Polypropylene (OPP) film, is heat sealable on both sides and has a print receptive surface, said the supplier. The film, which has been used successfully in a trial phase by Nestle for its Quality Street confectionery range, can be used for a variety of pack formats – VFFS, flow wrap, twistwrap and overwrap, added McEwen.
New Blend Speeds Biodegradation in Film and Enables Thicker Sheet and Molded Parts to Meet Compostability Requirements
Tuesday, June 01, 2010 BioplasticsThermoplastic Starch Content in Terraloy™ 20000 Series Compounds Expands the Applicability of Biodegradable Copolyester
A new blend of thermoplastic starch (TPS) and biodegradable copolyester (PBAT) degrades more rapidly than the copolyester alone, broadening application possibilities for blown and cast film, sheet, and thermoformed and injection molded parts intended for composting, it was announced today by the Bioplastics Division of Teknor Apex Company.
With TPS content ranging up to 40%, Terraloy™ 20000 Series compounds have passed the ASTM D6400 test for plastics intended for composting in aerobic facilities. Teknor Apex recommends the compounds for replacing polyolefins and polystyrene in applications such as carrier bags, can liners, trays and plates, cutlery, and flower pots.
While the starch in conventional blends acts as a filler, compromising the properties of the host polymer, the TPS in the new Terraloy compounds is melt-mixed with the copolyester, providing a synergistic effect that retains the key properties of the copolyester, according to Edwin Tam, manager of strategic initiatives. At the same time, the higher biodegradation rate of the TPS speeds composting of blown and cast film and makes it possible to produce thicker sheet and molded parts than with 100% PBAT, while meeting requirements for compostability.
“The process employed by Teknor Apex for intimately dispersing TPS within the host polymer makes it possible for plastics processors to do more with biodegradable copolyester,” Tam said.
He cited tests in which a 100% TPS part with thickness of 0.125-in (125-mil) biodegraded in less than one month, while a 0.007-in. (7 mil) part of 100% copolyester needed more than five months to achieve the same degree of degradation. “When TPS is incorporated into PBAT, it complements this material, opening up additional application possibilities for PBAT to meet the ASTM D-6400 compostability requirement, which is otherwise unachievable due to the thickness limitation for rate of compostability,” said Tam.