Record established at 6th European Bioplastics Conference
The interest in bioplastics has strongly increased over the last year, noted the association European Bioplastics. This trend was once more confirmed by the attendance record at the 6th European Bioplastics Conference. More than 400 visitors came to Berlin on 22 and 23 November to listen to the 29 exciting speeches from renowned industry experts. Furthermore, the accompanying exhibition and networking-formats met with high response.
With around 420 visitors from more than 250 companies and institutions from all over the world the European Bioplastics Conference once more established a record and remained the leading bioplastics industry event and the industry‘s information and networking platform number one. This year, more than 80 per cent of the participants came from Europe, 10 per cent from Asia, and the better part of the remaining 10 per cent from North and South America.
In his keynote speech Maurits van Tol, DSM Bio-based Products & Services, commented the worldwide potential of bioplastics: "Mass production of bioplastics is around the corner, and such large scale plants with their better cost structure will increase the chances of bioplastics in the relevant markets. The long awaited breakthrough of bioplastics in the worldwide market is near."
Another positive comment came from Werner Ressing, Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology who considers bioplastics an important pillar of economic growth: "Bioplastics offer numerous opportunities to increase the economic value added of the German and European economy."
The presentations showcased the potential of bioplastics from many different perspectives. A number of innovations were introduced - new materials, additives and end-of-life approaches. The session on 'bioplastics and sustainability' offered insights into environmental communications as well as into certification concepts.
A highlight of the 6th European Bioplastics Conference was the Bioplastics Magazine‘s 'Annual Global Bioplastics Award'. This year the panel of judges selected Danone GmbH (Germany) to be the winner. By using different bioplastics for the packaging of its brands Activia and Actimel, Danone made a significant contribution to moving bioplastics from a niche packaging product to a mass market product.
In view of the increased interest in bioplastics over the past year and with this successful event, Andy Sweetman, Chairman of European Bioplastics, offered a positive outlook for 2012: "The development of the bioplastics industry is picking up speed. We need clear framework conditions in Europe and a strong united voice to demand them. In 2012 the role and work of our industry association European Bioplastics, will become more and more important in order to support our young industry. Established and leading formats, such as the annual conference are of major importance to guarantee a rich and multi-facetted exchange of knowledge about bioplastics."
Dr John Williams, Head of Materials for Energy and Industry at the NNFCC, gave a presentation on "Feedstock Sustainability and Bioplastics: How other Bio-Markets Influence the Bioplastics Chain". To download his presentation click here.