Natural Plastics

News about the bioplastics industry

European Bioplastics condemns US research

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The association, which represents the interests of Europe’s bioplastics industry, said the study “Is Biodegradability a Desirable Attribute for Discarded Solid Waste?” is misleading as it refers to just one grade of bioplastics from the branch of (biodegradable) polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs).



These are known to be biodegradable under a wide range of conditions including anaerobic ones such as is found in bioreactors for biogasification, said European Bioplastics. However, PHAs constitute just one class within the large family of bioplastics and it is therefore misleading to generalise from one material to the entire range.



There are bio-based, non-biodegradable bioplastics such as PET, PE, polyamides and many more that do not at all produce methane (also referred to as biogas or landfill gas) because they are not biodegradable, explained the association. They, however, constitute a significant proportion of the current bioplastics production.



In addition, biodegradable and bio-based materials do not all behave the same way under landfill conditions, explained European Bioplastics. Their biodegradation profiles strongly depend on the actual conditions in a specific environment, such as landfill. As well as the inherent anaerobic biodegradability, the moisture content is an important parameter. In sanitary landfill the moisture level is low and not conducive for biodegradation as shown by some studies.

Generalising statements about the potential of methane emissions from bioplastics in landfill do not reflect the heterogeneity and the variety of the material class and they also do not take into account the variety of landfill types, the quality of the landfill gas management and the fact that, compared with other waste going to landfills and potentially emitting methane, bioplastics only enter landfill in very low amounts, especially in Europe.



The European Landfill Directive 1999/31/EC prescribes the reduction of the amounts of biodegradable wastes going to landfill and determines that only treated, i.e. stabilised and biologically inactive, waste is allowed as input.



Please click here to read more about the story from its source. Please note that the NNFCC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.



Bio-industry needs more innovation, says report

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This year's 8th Annual Report and Survey of Biopharmaceutical Manufacturing identifies twenty one new product development areas where biomanufacturers are demading better products and more innovation.



The study evaluates and quantifies the new technology needs from over 350 global biomanufacturers across 31 countries. In addition, the report surveyed 180 suppliers to identify what is currently being developed to meet the industry's most urgent requirements. According to suppliers, innovation has never been more well funded, and broad in scope.



Interestingly the report found that European, US, and Asian biomanufacturers each have different demands for new technologies. In Western Europe demands are for better purification technologies, while in the US manufacturers want sensors and probes and Asian manufacturers want better analytical developments.



According to the reports authors budgets are growing in all areas measured, but the great majority are continuing to actively implement cost-cutting initiatives. In addition, a broad range of new products are being demanded from industry vendors to solve productivity problems, especially in single use and chromatography areas.



To read the report in full please click here. Please note that the NNFCC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.



DaniMer Scientific Presents at 2011 BioPlastek Forum

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DaniMer Scientific, a national corporation focusing on the development of sustainably produced, renewable and biodegradable resources, is presenting at the 2011 Bioplastek Forum in New York City.



DaniMer Scientific President Blake Lindsey will be part of a breakout session panel on packaging applications, discussing biopolymers and the value delivered to clients.



As part of the presentation, he will unveil the first of a complete family of hot melt adhesives based on biodegradable polymers. These bio-resin adhesives are manufactured using renewable materials rather than the petroleum derived materials that are used to make traditional hot melt adhesives. The new DaniMer adhesives are designed to operate in existing hot melt applicators including hand-guns and automatic applicators.



“It is a very exciting time in the world of bioplastics,” said Lindsey. “DaniMer is honored to be a part of such an innovative and forward-thinking group to discuss our technology and the advances we’re making in bioplastics and hot melt adhesives.”



The inaugural BioPlastek Forum on Bioplastics Today and Tomorrow, features more than 40 top-level industry, brand owner/OEM, processor, academic and government leaders, presenting analyses of where the industry is today and its future potential.



“We are constantly working to improve our technology and develop new resins to help our clients achieve their goals, while supporting global efforts to use sustainable resources,” added Lindsey. “Our biodegradable plastics offer improved product performance and can be used in a variety of applications from packaging to labels, bottles and lids.”



DaniMer Scientific believes people’s lives can be improved and the environment can be better protected by utilizing renewable resources to manufacture articles that are intended for short-term use. One of the company’s goals is to reduce dependence on petroleum, enabling people and communities to benefit from environmentally friendly products.



For more information about the forum, please visit:



Global Biodegradable Polymers Market To Grow To Over £2.5 Bln In 2016

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Worldwide biodegradable polymers market will grow to over £2.5 bln in 2016 from an expected value of £932 mln in 2011 at 22% of five-year compound annual growth rate (CAGR), as per BCC Research.



The packaging market, which represents a major share in the biodegradable polymers market, is predicted to achieve about £1.7 bln in 2016 from an expected £656 mln in 2011, for a five-year CAGR of 20.5%. The report expects that the fabrics and fibers segment of the biodegradable polymers market would grow at 26.6% of CAGR to achieve revenues of £435 mln in 2016. The segment’s expected revenues in 2011 is £134 mln. The automotive sector is estimated to gain revenues of £160 mln in 2016 at a CAGR of 37.1%, while the agriculture sector would grow at a CAGR of 8.2% to reach £80 mln in 2016.



According to the report, the electrical and electronic sector’s estimated revenues in 2016 is £24 million for CAGR of 32.6% and the medical sector’s revenues would increase at a CAGR of 32.6% to reach £41 mln in 2016, while the food service sector’s expected revenues in 2016 is £40 mln for a CAGR of 9.9%. The product life cycle of the biodegradable polymer market is still in the nascent stage, despite more than two decades of commercial existence. Inadequate infrastructure for efficient composting and higher prices of biopolymer materials are the major hurdles for the market. New technologies, shaky oil prices and stringent environmental standards are some of the factors that will drive the biodegradable polymers industry in the next five years.


Nestlé sees bioplastics as future of packaging

Dr Anne Roulin, Global Head of Packaging and Design at Nestlé, talks about the future of packaging in this exclusive interview with news website

In the second half of a two-part video , released this week, Dr Roulin explained why conventional plastics made from renewable resources could be the industry’s next major trend.

Speaking from Nestlé’s headquarters in Switzerland, she said that bioplastics made from sugar cane and other plant based materials are demonstrating the kind of properties that could be used more widely across the Company’s product portfolio. Dr Roulin went on to point out that a third generation of plastics - made from non-food sources such as algae, cellulose, and waste products - is also in the pipeline.

However she added such materials are unlikely to be available on the scale required until at least 2015.

Sustainable packaging
Dr Roulin’s insights follow on from her comments in the first half of the interview, where she outlined why Nestlé is a leader in sustainable packaging.

Here, she described how the use of a ground-breaking eco-design tool has enhanced the Company’s ability to assess the full environmental impact of a particular packaging design.

She also explained why changing consumers are influencing the way Nestlé designs its products; from easier-to-open bottles for a rapidly ageing population, to different pack sizes for shoppers in emerging markets.


Creating a Biopolymer Compound

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With new materials and innovation methods for compounding, sometimes the compounder has a rather wide range of possibilities on what kinds of materials could be created. So how much biopolymer in a compound is enough? This interesting challenge was addressed by Roger Avakian, Vice President for Scientific Development, PolyOne™ Corporation, at an Emerging Technology Forum (ETF), sponsored by PolymerOhio and held in Columbus.



PolyOne in Avon Lake, OH, is the world’s largest independent compounder. One of their products, reSound™ is a biopolymer compound that can be used in combination with thermoplastic resins to produce numerous desirable strength and resilience properties well-suited for building and construction applications.



PolyOne is well positioned today in disposable goods and for future opportunities with the emerging durables sector, said Avakian. “Disposable goods have a much shorter expected life than durable products, which are designed to live 10 to 30 years.” Disposable goods have much lower technical requirements than products from engineering polymers, vinyl, products, and other longer lasting goods.



A key product of PolyOne is reSound™, a biopolymer compound (as are polylactic acid [PLA], polyhydroxybutyrate [PHB], poly-3-hydroxy butyrate-co-valerate [PHBV], others). Biopolymers are made via a biological fermentation process from renewable raw materials. But, as Avakian pointed out, combining engineering thermoplastic resins with bio-derived polymers is a balancing process of creating a compound that meets performance requirements and using enough bio-derived content to substantially reduce the products’ carbon footprint. How much biopolymer can be in a compound and be enough? Avakian answered, “From sustainable resources that can be renewed, such as in 10 years, we decided that 30 percent would be necessary (the minimum) to really make an impact.”



“But we also had to look at our customers and find out what properties they needed, or, in the case of packaging, find out what materials are needed, especially for contact with food.” “We determine what temperature would work, what amount of impact the material would have to be able to withstand, what engineering properties were needed, how feasible the use of such a material would be in today’s injection molding equipment, whether the material would need the same cycle times, how the biopolymer compound would function with other materials that are available today, and, additionally, whether the materials could be used for food packaging.”



The heat distortion temperature (HDT) of biopolymers presented a big challenge. PLA is made from corn. PolyOne was getting PLA from a supplier in Nebraska, and the material did not have good heat and impact strength. “Our challenge was to move PLA to higher performance properties,” Avakian said. His team began by looking at prior art. To customize the materials, they got inputs from customers, and focused their efforts on materials that needed to be developed to meet market demands.


Actually adjusting the engineering qualities of the PLA polymer meant working with various percentages of PLA across a range of HDT vs. room temperature (RT) notched izod impact testing – this comprised their design space used to modify and maximize the PLA content of reSound compounds and test for sufficient durability before using the biopolymer compound for enhanced applications, Avakian said. For example, PLA/reSound materials showed dramatically less fungal growth at 16 weeks’ exposure testing than both starch compounds or starch/petro-based polymer compounds at 2 weeks’ testing.


PolyOne is continuing to explore processes that are well-suited for such materials as reSound. “We are exploring a breadth of processes, including injection molding, profile extrusion, sheet calendering, and thermoforming,” Avakian said. Plasticized PLA is also being explored for its applicability to end uses requiring flexibility and resilience. Plasticized formulations are being explored to make materials “softer,” such as for a shower curtain.



For now, the PolyOne biopolymers “are in C stage of stage gate for introduction,” said Avakian. “We are now looking at markets, price and value, and customizing formulations for specific markets, including electronics enclosures, communications, transportation, food handling, and others.”

“PolyOne has identified a viable approach to improved heat distortion of PLA under normal injection molding conditions with compositions that include approximately 50 percent PLA. Our reSound™RS1100 has food approval grade; RS1200 can be formulated for food approval,” said Avakian. “We have demonstrated robust processability/performance and composition in reSound compounds with regard to grade of PLA utilized, and our approach does not require high purity PLA.” Avakian concluded by saying that as PolyOne moves forward with biopolymer compounds, various grades of PLA are being applied to give the properties required. One goal is that the compounds must be reusable for molders, which have typically 40 percent of materials that need to be recycled internally to the process. There are plenty of challenges and plenty of progress to report.


PolyOne Corporation is the world’s premier provider of specialized polymer materials, services, and solutions. In 2010, its annual revenues totaled $2.6 billion. PolyOne has corporate headquarters in Avon Lake Ohio, U.S.A., and operations in North America, South America, Europe, and Asia. The operations include 51 manufacturing facilities and 13 warehouses in 20 countries, serving more than 10,000 customers in 35 countries with more than 35,000 products.

PolymerOhio, Inc. is a polymer industry-specific Ohio Edison Technology Center, which is funded by the Ohio Department of Development. PolymerOhio focuses on enhancing the global competitiveness of the polymer industry, including companies from the plastics, rubber, bioproducts, and advanced materials segments.



Sustainability gets clear – new transparent and flexible biopolymer for blown film extrusion

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FKuR has launched a new transparent, flexible biopolymer. Called Bio-Flex® F 2201 CL this material contains a high content of renewable resources and, in line with the other resins in the Bio-Flex® family, can be processed easily on standard LDPE blown film lines and converting equipment.





With a renewable resource content of approximately 60 % this grade is a consistent further development of the Bio-Flex® family. Its mechanical properties exhibit a high elongation and flexibility along with good puncture resistance. Consequently Bio-Flex® F 2201 CL can ideally be used to adjust the properties of all the available Bio-Flex® family resins. However, due to its good interply strength, Bio-Flex® F 2201 CL is recommended to be used as a mid-layer in a co-extruded structure. As a result of its mechanical properties it is the perfect partner for Bio-Flex® A 4100 CL in a transparent 3-layer combination. Bio-Flex® A 4100 CL is a clear but stiff material with properties comparable to PP.



The combination of these two transparent grades offers superb and unmatched clarity for a biodegradable blown film available today while maintaining a very high content of renewable resource material. This is between 60 - 80% depending on the variation of polymers of the final structure. As both polymers are clear, the transparency of a 20µm film, for example, is close to 91% (light transmission figure). The toughness and high tear resistance are the result of the core Bio-Flex® F 2201 CL layer and the renewable content of a 20 micron 3-layer structure with a layer ratio of 20 / 60 / 20 (%) is around 70%. Using such a structure, this film is ideal for VFFS applications.



Bioplastics are a unique class of material which are based on renewable resources or which enable the biodegradability of products made from these polymers.


About FKuR

FKuR Kunststoff GmbH, Willich, Germany is a leading producer of biopolymer resins/blends for flexible packaging (Bio-Flex®) and rigid applications (Biograde®). The cooperation with the Fraunhofer Institute UMSICHT, Oberhausen, Germany, guarantees our innovation, know-how and quality.



Berry Plastics and USDA-ARS Collaborate to Create Sustainable Solutions Using PLA and Sugar Beet Pulp

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Berry Plastics Corporation (Berry) has teamed up with the Agricultural Research Service (ARS), the in-house research arm of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), to create sustainable solutions in packaging. A totally biodegradable, competitively priced, thermoplastic is in the early stages of development for use in food containers. The plastic is manufactured from a biodegradable polymer, poly(lactic acid) (PLA), and up to 70% of sugar beet pulp (SBP). SBP is a fiber-rich byproduct of beet sugar processing.


The U.S. beet sugar industry generates more than 1.5 million tons of dry pulp each year, which are mainly used as low-value livestock feed. ARS scientist, Dr. LinShu Liu and his colleagues in the Eastern Regional Research Center, Wyndmoor, PA; Professor Jinwen Zhang of the Washington State University, Pullman, WA; and Ms. Gail Becke and her coworkers at Berry Plastics, Evansville, IN, are collaborating on a project to convert SBP into a thermoplastic composite with PLA.





The research started in 2004, when Liu collaborated with Dr. Victoria Finkenstadt of the ARS National Center for Agricultural Utilization Research in Peoria, IL. The team developed the first PLA/SBP thermoplastics in which the tensile strength decreased in relation to the amount of SBP in the composites.


To solve this problem, the team has continued their pioneering work. Using newly developed technology, 50% SBP thermoplastics are able to retain the mechanical properties similar to low density polystyrene or polypropylene.


PLA is biomass-derived, compostable and is non-toxic, making it an ideal packaging material. PLA is more expensive to produce than most petroleum-derived thermoplastics, which narrows the application of PLA in the packaging industry. A 50% SBP/PLA thermoplastic can match or beat the cost of conventional petroleum-derived plastics. The technology is promising and once fully developed, it will provide a completely green material for food packaging.



Berry is a leading manufacturer of plastic packaging which includes a variety of rigid products as well as a wide selection of flexible package solutions. Based in Evansville, Indiana, the company has over 70 manufacturing facilities worldwide and over 15,000 employees. As this new technology develops, Berry Plastics plans to further expand on its sustainable offerings in the plastic packaging market. Along with greatly benefiting the plastic packaging arena, this sugar beet pulp-PLA bioplastic will also strengthen the competitiveness of the US beet sugar industry in the global market.



Plant-based PLA Form-Fill-Seal Plastic Multi-Pack Yogurt Cup Developed for Stonyfield Farm Achieves Top Honors


The 2011 DuPont Awards for Packaging Innovation has recognized Clear Lam Packaging for its breakthrough work on the industry’s first plant-based PLA Form-Fill-Seal Plastic Multi-Pack Yogurt Cup application for Stonyfield Farm.  Clear Lam achieved a Silver Award for Excellence in Innovation. Winners of DuPont Awards represent the best packaging innovations from around the globe and demonstrate excellence in meeting consumer needs while achieving innovation, sustainability and cost/waste reduction.  Winners were announced during a live webcast today.


     “Earning this award and being recognized by our peers worldwide is a tremendous honor for our organization,” said James Sanfilippo, president and CEO of Clear Lam Packaging, Inc. “Our entire team is dedicated to pursuing the next great packaging advancement and this award validates their hard work and extraordinary commitment.”


     The DuPont Awards for Packaging Innovation are judged by a prestigious international jury.  Winners were selected from hundreds of entries provided by packaging designers, converters, consumer goods processors, retailers and equipment manufacturers from all regions of the globe.


     “The Packaging Awards program is an opportunity to celebrate how collaborating throughout the value chain can bring cost-effective innovation to market to help solve the big issues,” said Shanna Moore, global director sustainable packaging, DuPont Packaging & Industrial Polymers. “Clear Lam’s application for the form-fill-seal machine captures the spirit of innovation to resolve complex global challenges.”


     Developed exclusively by Clear Lam as part of its Project EarthClear™ program, the new packaging material was produced from modified Ingeo™ PLA and used in the industry’s first application for the form-fill-seal machine. Stonyfield produced the formed cups on its own yogurt cup packaging equipment and is using the new packaging on its entire multi-pack yogurt cup product line.


     For nearly a decade, Clear Lam has invested extensively in research and development to commercialize new packaging technologies that minimize the impact on the environment. These efforts include three product lines developed for Clear Lam’s Project EarthClear™ program: Flexible and Rigid Packaging made from renewable raw materials, bioplastics, cellophane and paper (not petroleum-based feedstocks); Flexible and Rigid Packaging made with recycled plastic or paper; and Lightweighting Materials to eliminate heavy cans, bottles and jars. Today Clear Lam is one of the world’s largest extruders and thermoformers of plant-based Ingeo™ PLA.


To learn more about the Project EarthClear™ program, please visit

About Clear Lam Packaging:
Founded in 1969, Clear Lam Packaging, Inc. is a leading manufacturer of rigid and flexible packaging materials for thousands of food, personal health care and other consumer products. With seven manufacturing facilities worldwide (four in the U.S. and three in China), Clear Lam employs nearly 750 people. Vertically integrated from design to manufacturing, Clear Lam has the largest thermoforming platforms in the world.


About DuPont Awards for Packaging Innovation:
Now in its 23rd year, the DuPont Awards for Packaging Innovation is the industry’s longest-running, global, independently judged celebration of innovation and collaboration throughout the value chain. Each year an esteemed panel awards diamond, gold or silver honors based on “excellence” ratings in one or all of three categories: Innovation; Sustainability; and Cost/Waste Reduction.



Ingeo™ is a registered trademark of NatureWorks LLC

EarthClear™ is a trademark of Clear Lam Packaging, Inc.



Greenware® Cold-Drink Cups, Lids and Portion Cups Awarded USDA Certified Biobased Product Label

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Fabri-Kal is proud to announce their Greenware® cold drink cups, lids and portion cups have earned the USDA Certified Biobased Product Label. Greenware® products are made entirely from plants, not petroleum, and are USDA certified as containing 100 percent biobased carbon content. Greenware® products are made with Ingeo™ biopolymer (PLA), which received USDA Biobased Product Label certification in April of this year.



In addition to providing technologically and environmentally advanced packaging solutions, Fabri-Kal is committed to producing domestic goods. All Greenware® products are made in the USA from plant sources that are domestically-grown and annually renewable as well as 100 percent compostable in actively managed municipal or industrial facilities, where available.



“Greenware® products were the first made-in-the-USA, 100 percent biobased cold-drink cups and portion cups made from Ingeo™ biopolymer.  We are proud to receive the USDA BioPreferred™ program certification for Greenware® cold-drink cups, portion cups and lids,” said Fabri-Kal President Mike Roeder. “Innovation and commitment to the environment are key objectives that drive our business. We’re confident the USDA Certified Biobased Product Label will serve as a credible and trusted symbol for consumers by identifying biobased products that have undergone a robust third party certification to validate the claims.”


Under the USDA BioPreferred™ program, products are labeled “biobased” if they are composed wholly or significantly of biological ingredients, such as renewable plant material. The fundamental goals of the USDA BioPreferred™ program include spurring the development of the biobased industrial base to meet sustainability goals, enhancing energy security by substituting biobased products – such as Greenware® cold-drink cups, lids and portion cups – for petroleum-based products and promoting eco-friendly products to reduce environmental impact.



About Fabri-Kal
Fabri-Kal is a leading provider of plastic foodservice and custom thermoformed packaging solutions. As one of the largest thermoformers in North America, Fabri-Kal has a customer base that includes thousands of foodservice operators and dozens of consumer product manufacturers. Headquartered in Kalamazoo, Mich., and in continuous operation since 1950, Fabri-Kal employs more than 800 people in five manufacturing, printing and warehousing facilities throughout the United States. More information about Fabri-Kal may be found at the company’s website,



About Greenware® Products
With Greenware® products you don’t have to sacrifice performance and clarity for an eco-friendly product – Greenware® satisfies all of these needs. To find out more about Greenware® products, to learn about Fabri-Kal’s No Greenwashing Pledge and to locate composting facilities in your area, visit



About USDA’s BioPreferred™ Program
USDA’s BioPreferred™ program was created by the 2002 Farm Bill to increase the purchase and use of biobased products within the federal government. Congress reauthorized and strengthened the program in the 2008 Farm Bill to further promote the sale of biobased products. With the launch of this new biobased product label, USDA’s BioPreferred™ program is now composed of two parts: A biobased product procurement preference program for federal agencies and a voluntary labeling initiative for the broad-scale marketing of biobased products. For more detailed program information and resources, visit

Polimeri Europa (Eni group) and Novamont together for Matrìca, a bio-based chemical complex: a new age for the chemical industry

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The new Joint Italian Venture has as its mission the designing, building and managing of chemical plants using vegetable oil feedstock for the production of biochemicals (bio-plastics, bio-lubricants and bio-additives for elastomers).
San Donato Milanese, June 13th, 2011 – Polimeri Europa – the biggest Italian chemical company, a subsidiary of Eni – and Novamont – a global market leader in biodegradable plastics – announced 13 June plans to build an innovative bio-based chemical complex in Porto Torres (Sardinia, Italy). With a total investment of 500 million Euro ($700 million), the project consists of seven new plants – an integrated production chain from vegetable oil to bio plastics - to be completed within the next six years, and a research center devoted to bio-chemistry that will be operative in the next quarter.


Matrìca, the fifty-fifty Joint Venture set up by Polimeri Europa and Novamont will execute the bio-based chemical complex, where the basic engineering of the first phase has already been completed. Eni also plans to invest an additional 250 million Euro in a biomass power station to provide the electric power.


JV’s target market is the global bio-based chemical sector. According to recent analyst research this sector will grow at 17.7% per year reaching 8.1 million tons in 2015.

Novamont brings to the venture technologies and research and innovation skills in the sector of bioplastics and bio-based products, whilst Polimeri Europa boosts this highly innovative project with its engineering and commercial capabilities in carrying out and managing big industrial complexes.

Polimeri Europa will convert the Porto Torres production from traditional fossil into bio-based productions: all the traditional chemical plants at the site with the exception of nitrilic rubbers NBR will be shut down, creating an available skilled workforce and facilities for the new project.

The bio-based chemical complex will be one of the most important in the sector at a global level – due to its innovative integrated production chain, its size and the massive overall installed capacity of 350 kt/a of bio-products.

Daniele Ferrari CEO of Polimeri Europa said: “ We aim to grow a new key sector of the Italian economy, creating a virtuous cycle based on technological innovation and sustainable bio-products with low environmental impact and high integration with the local territory. We are confident that this is an industrial model that will be exported. “

By joining forces with Novamont in the fast growing renewable bio-materials business, Polimeri Europa stabilizes and strengthens its traditional chemical business and at the same time transfers research and innovation from the bio field into fossil chemistry.

Catia Bastioli, CEO of Novamont said: “Novamont’s vision is to achieve full implementation of a “Biorefinery model closely linked to the Territory” through cooperation with the agricultural, industrial, institutional and academic sectors. Our intention is to deliver an exemplary model in the global market place, inspiring an innovative approach in the use of renewable raw materials with maximum attention given to the environmental impact on the local territory”.

Project details
Using raw materials of vegetable origin, the new bio-based chemical plants will produce innovative products, specifically chemical intermediates for bio-plastics, bio-lubrifcants and bio-additives for elastomers.

The Bio-Materials will not only be fully biodegradable but also produced almost entirely from renewable raw materials.
With high-level integration in the local territory, the project foresees the upstream cultivation and production of vegetable oil which is the raw material of the Bio-Monomers plant in Sardinia. The location of the new project represents an advantage in terms of the agricultural vocation of Sardinian land and the large amount of land available.

The seven new plants will be built in three stages:
Phase A – The first stage of the project sees the construction of a Bio-Monomers plant (the so called bio-refinery) and a Bio-Lubricants plant.

Phase B – In the second stage a plant will be erected that produces Bio-Extensor oils and Bio-Fillers for the rubber industry. These plants will use intermediates produced by the Bio-Monomers plant.

Phase C – The third stage of the project will be a scale-up of the first phase with new larger lines of Bio-Monomers and Bio-Lubricants and a downstream plant for the production of Bio-Plastics that will be used for a variety of market applications in the fields of waste collection, hygiene, agriculture, catering and packaging.

The continuous development and innovation of products and processes is ensured by the activities of the new research center and will be carried out jointly between the two partners’ research centers and in cooperation with national and international high-level research institutions.

Furthermore, the synergy between the new bio-materials produced by JV and the traditional chemical products manufactured by Polimeri Europa, both in terms of commercial and production synergies will guarantee the success of the project.

Polimeri Europa and Novamont have developed relevant synergies between bio-materials and elastomers specifically for the tyre market and will bring to market a range of bio elastomer grades characterized by higher performances and lower environmental impact.



Sustainable Packaging Solutions Grab Top DuPont Packaging Awards

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Gillette, Coca Cola, Intel, GlaxoSmithKlein and Heinz are among the top brands to secure DuPont Packaging Awards announced yesterday.  The 23rd annual awards program honors packaging innovation and shows how collaboration throughout the global value chain can bring cost-effective innovation to the market to help improve sustainability, the consumer experience and reduce waste.





“This year’s winners show the important role packaging plays in enabling more sustainable consumer goods,” said Bill Harvey, president -- DuPont Packaging & Industrial Polymers.  “They also show how innovative use of materials can lead to cost-effective, sustainable packaging solutions.”

These trends bear out in the results of a recent DuPont global survey of packaging professionals which found sustainability is the top challenge facing the industry, closely followed by cost concerns.



John Bernardo, principal, Sustainable Innovations LLC, head of the jury panel, said: “Nearly all of the winning innovations related to reducing waste in the system.  The jury could see a much deeper consideration of sustainability concerns, starting with responsible sourcing, thoughtful package design, all the way to end-of-life factors.”



In addition to honoring innovation, the DuPont Packaging Awards program stresses the importance of shared learnings and insights as a means of fostering collaboration throughout the value chain.



This year, the global webcast announcing the winners also includes perspectives from the independent jury panel and insights into bringing innovation to market from many of the winners.  Featured speakers were:

  • Bob Lilienfeld, whose “Use Less Stuff” segments are featured on FOX News.  He spoke on the sustainable packaging paradox – closing the gap between quantum science and consumer psychology.
  • Peter Clarke, founder and CEO of Product Ventures, spoke on the future of package design and challenges to incorporate innovation, sustainability and cost/waste reduction.

View more information on the winners and their packaging innovations.



ITENE develops advanced features a bottle of biodegradable materials

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Renewable raw materials have been the basis for the development and manufacture of fully biodegradable bottle.
So far, bioplastics on the market did not have acceptable properties for the packaging of liquids and beverages in bottles, due to the low thermal resistance and high permeability of the material used.

ITENE biodegradable bottle.
ITENE has developed an innovative product, -patent pending - that incorporates a matrix nanorefuerzos bioplastic, and which provides enhanced properties.

The new material is a nanocomposite (polymer from renewable sources + nanorefuerzo) based on surface-modified nanoclay material providing mechanical and thermal resistance, and reduced permeability to gases, while retaining the ability to biodegrade.


Responding to real demand
Nowadays society demands packaging made from renewable sources that meet the specifications required for the preservation of the product that will hold and that, after use, degrade, reducing waste generation.

However, the behavior of bioplastics in particular polylactic acid (PLA), one of the most used, was not optimal and so far had not gotten a material that would be competitive to current market applications, such as bottles .



The PLA is being used successfully in other applications, such as food trays which are available at any supermarket, but its use in the beverage sector was difficult due to high permeability of this material, this made the contents of the bottle permeate through the container, and produce a collapse of the walls of the bottle. Likewise, limited heat resistance, reduced use of atmospheric conditions with low ambient temperatures.

ITENE researchers have found the key to solving all these shortcomings and have obtained, through the incorporation of modified nanoclay, a bioplastic material with improved mechanical properties: stronger, less rigid and with better performance in water vapor transmission, and permeability to gases, and heat.

Several multinationals have been interested in producing a patent under the bottle made with the new material developed by ITENE.

This innovation was introduced in Düsseldorf during the last edition of Interpack, the most important fair worldwide led to the packaging industry, packaging and manufacturing equipment.

This project is financed by the Generalitat Valenciana IMPIVA and FEDER funds of the European Union.


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ZeaChem Executes Joint Development Agreement with Procter & Gamble

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ZeaChem Inc., a developer of biorefineries for the conversion of renewable feedstocks into sustainable fuels and chemicals, today announced a binding multi-year joint development agreement with Procter & Gamble (NYSE: PG). The agreement will accelerate development of ZeaChem's product platform beyond C2 through the commercialization of “drop-in” bio-based chemicals and other products.


“As part of its long-term environmental sustainability vision, P&G is committed to using 100% sustainably sourced renewable or recycled materials for all products and packaging,” said Len Sauers, P&G's vice president for global sustainability. “Novel innovations from our suppliers, such as ZeaChem's unique process to create bio-based chemicals, are critical to us achieving this vision.”


“We're very pleased to partner with Procter & Gamble, a global leader in consumer products and sustainable operations,” said Jim Imbler, president and CEO of ZeaChem. “This definitive agreement will accelerate the time to market for our new product platform and the commercial production of economical and sustainable biofuels and bio-based chemicals using ZeaChem's highly efficient technology.”


ZeaChem's process uses renewable feedstocks such as poplar trees and agricultural residues to produce the highest yield and lowest carbon emissions of any known biorefining technology. The company has begun fermentation work on this new product platform using the same processes and equipment that the company used to prove and scale up its C2 product platform. The new platform also enables ZeaChem to ultimately deploy its technology for the production of other bio-based chemicals as well as drop-in fuels. The two companies will utilize ZeaChem's existing infrastructure at its lab in Menlo Park, Calif., pilot facility at Hazen Research in Golden, Colo., and demonstration-scale biorefinery in Boardman, Ore. Together, P&G and ZeaChem will research, develop and demonstrate, scale-up, and commercialize this new product platform.



About ZeaChem Inc.

ZeaChem Inc. has developed a cellulose-based biorefinery platform capable of producing advanced fuels and intermediate chemicals. ZeaChem's indirect approach leapfrogs the yield and carbon dioxide (CO2) problems associated with traditional and cellulosic based biorefinery processes. In addition, ZeaChem has a significant capital cost advantage compared to other cellulosic technologies. By efficiently extracting the most energy possible from biomass feedstocks, ZeaChem significantly increases output while reducing both production costs and environmental impacts. Incorporated in 2002, ZeaChem is headquartered in Lakewood, Colo. and operates a research and development laboratory facility in Menlo Park, Calif.

Please visit for more information.

Novamont demonstrates biodegradable plastic bags in India

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Italy-based bio-polymer firm Novamont has demonstrated its eco-friendly bio-plastic bag in India that may replace polythene bag in the retail markets in the country.


The Supreme Court of India has recommended the government to take strict action on the use of plastic pouches for gutka an ban the use of plastic carry bag.


Novamont said the compostable bio-plastic bags is produced out of non-edible vegetable oils and starch unlike the traditional polythene material that is oil-based.


Novamont business development director Stefano Facco said that oil is scarce and expensive and this movement towards bio-plastic could well shift focus from oil wells to oil farms with cultivators increasingly going for vegetable oilseeds.


The biodegradable bags are water-proof, transparent and hygienic and come in varied sizes to hold domestic wet garbage of 2 kg to 5 kg and large trash of 15 kg to 20 kg.

Earthsoul Founder and CEO Perses Billimoria said that unlike polymer bags which remain in the soil and harm it in the process, the bio-plastic material is naturally compostable and does not harm the nature at all.



Indian states like Andhra Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh and Rajasthan have totally banned plastic bags in the state.



Gevo Begins Retrofit of World's First Commercial-Scale Biobased Isobutonal Plant

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Gevo, Inc. (NASDAQ: GEVO), a renewable chemicals and advanced biofuels company, announced today that it has begun the retrofit of its ethanol facility in Luverne, Minnesota, to produce biobased isobutanol. This milestone brings the company one step closer to commercial-scale production. The retrofit, which is expected to be complete by next summer, will make this facility the world's first commercial-scale biobased isobutanol plant.


"Isobutanol made from renewable raw materials can be used to make a variety of everyday products such as rubber, plastics and fuel, and is a versatile solution to help displace our country's dependency on petroleum and create a biobased economy," said Patrick Gruber, Ph.D., CEO of Gevo. "Through this retrofit, Gevo is providing a high-value product that supports our nation's agriculture industry."


Biobased isobutanol has emerged as a frontrunner in the race to end the United States' dependency on petroleum because it is a drop in replacement for a variety of products. It can be sold in the marketplace as both a solvent chemical and a fuel blendstock, or it can be converted into four carbon building blocks called butenes, which can be used to make 40 percent of all petrochemicals and a 100 percent of all hydrocarbon fuels.

Gevo acquired the Luverne, Minnesota plant, which has an isobutanol production capacity of 18 million gallons per year, from Agri-Energy LLC in September 2010. Currently, the plant has 27 employees.


The official groundbreaking ceremony will take place today at 12:00 pm CDT at Gevo's ethanol facility, located at 502 South Walnut Avenue in Luverne, Minnesota. The ceremony will be attended by Gevo executives, employees and elected officials including U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar, Minnesota State Senator Doug Magnus and Minnesota State Representative Joe Schomacker.


About Gevo

Gevo is developing capital efficient biorefinery systems to provide renewable, cost-effective building block products to the chemical and fuel industries. The Company seeks to convert renewable raw materials into isobutanol and renewable hydrocarbons that can be directly integrated on a "drop in" basis into existing chemical and fuel products to deliver environmental and economic benefits. Gevo is committed to a sustainable biobased economy that meets society's needs for plentiful food and clean air and water. For more information, visit


SOURCE: Gevo, Inc.

Compostable bioplastics set for big win at London Olympics

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Materials getting a ‘green’ makeover will include fast food wrappers, sandwich boxes and drink cartons. After they’ve been used many of these materials will be suitable for anaerobic digestion (AD), allowing them to be made into renewable energy.


“The London Olympics has given us a unique opportunity to showcase the benefits of using compostable packaging, particularly for food, and recovering its stored energy at end-of-life using anaerobic digestion,” says Dr John Williams, Head of Materials for Energy and Industry at the NNFCC.


The NNFCC and British Printing Industries Federation have been working with the London Organising Committee for the Olympic Games (LOCOG) to ensure compostable food packaging is part of London 2012’s sustainability promise.


When London won the Olympics they pledged to set “new standards of sustainability” and organisers committed to sending zero waste direct to landfill during the Games, with a minimum of 70 per cent to be reused, recycled or composted.

This was no small commitment. An estimated 6.5 million people will attend the London Olympics and in the space of just 17 days will generate over 3,300 tonnes of food packaging waste.

What is done with this large amount of waste will have far reaching consequences on the Games’ carbon footprint and could also affect the long-term sustainability of the packaging industry..


The response from industry has been extremely positive, and plastics manufacturers hope it will demonstrate a workable model that can be rolled out nationally.


“Using renewable materials at the Olympics is a great way to demonstrate to the public how seriously the packaging industry is taking sustainability,” says Andy Sweetman, Chairman of the European Bioplastics Association.


“Moving the packaging industry towards a low carbon economy is challenging but bioplastic manufacturers are at the forefront of innovation.”