Natural Plastics

News about the bioplastics industry

Cellulac to produce up to 100,000 tonnes of lactic acid per year

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Cellulac intends  to produce Lactic Acid and Polylactic Acid for biodegradable plastics, Ethyl Lactate, a green solvent, and Sodium Lactate. The Company has produced lactic acid at a pilot plant in Potsdam, Germany. It expects to ramp up production at the facility initially to 20,000 tonnes per annum, which will have a revenue value in excess of €40 million, for export by the end of 2015. Operations are expected to commence by June 2014.


Project Highlights:

Production of lactic acid at 40% below current producers costs
Flexibility to use agricultural and brewery waste as well as dairy by-products
Phase 1 (20,000 tonnes) to provide 30 full time jobs
Phase 2 (100,000 tonnes) to increase to 60 full time jobs
$1.6 billion market for lactic acid based biochemicals
Market growth forecast at 20% per annum until 2025

The proprietary end-to-end platform involves the integration of a number of complementary technologies that cellulac has acquired or developed. These include enzyme cocktails, fermentation protocols, non-genetically modified bacteria (non-GMO) and SoniqueFloTM, all of which are protected by an extensive portfolio of 136 patents (granted and pending).

Gerard Brandon Chief Executive Officer of cellulac said: “Ireland has a world-wide reputation for quality food ingredients derived from the agricultural sector. It is fitting, therefore, that we are at the forefront of the new bio-economy sector. With the support of the European Union we will convert, part of what was until recently, the 2nd largest brewery in Ireland into what will be the largest producer of lactic acid from agricultural waste and dairy by-products. This will not only directly breath new opportunity into Dundalk by creating 30 jobs, but it will also indirectly support agricultural jobs in the rural community and generate local taxes that will benefit the area.”

“Today’s agreement is an important step in accelerating our plans for commercial production. We look forward to commissioning the retrofitted and repurposed facility by mid-2014.”

Sean Sherlock T.D. Minister for Science & Innovation commented: “I am delighted at this announcement by the company of its plans to create 30 new jobs for Dundalk.This is a shining example of EU and Government supporting science and innovation to cross-over to industry. We are delighted to be involved in this environmentally friendly project that not only creates new jobs, increases GDP and exports but contributes to the reduction of our Country’s lower carbon emission targets to benefit the community as a whole.”

Source:  Cellulac

Laurel BioComposite LLC earns USDA Certified Biobased Product Label

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imageLaurel BioComposite LLC announced it has earned the USDA Certified Biobased Product Label for its Bio-Res™ PE and Bio-Res™ powder products. The company first introduced the biomaterial in 2011 as a cost-effective, green replacement with improved performance properties for traditional petroleum-based resins in a variety of plastics manufacturing processes.

The BioPreferred label assures customers that Laurel BioComposite products contain bio-materials in the amounts specified. The company’s newly certified products also are part of the Federal procurement preference program and may help achieve Materials & Resource Credits 6 (MR-6) as well as additional credit categories related to LEED certification.

Tim Bearnes, CEO of Laurel BioComposites comments: “One of our goals in bringing our new product to life and helping to establish it in the mainstream marketplace is to guarantee that the information we provide about the bio-content, renewability and sustainability of Bio-Res PE and Bio-Res powder is credible and accurate,” . “The independent assessment, verification and reporting of the USDA’s BioPreferred program is important and helps us achieve that objective.”

"We are proud that Laurel BioComposite has earned the USDA Certified Biobased Product Label," says Ron Buckhalt, USDA BioPreferred program manager. "Biobased products add value to renewable agriculture commodities, create jobs in rural communities and help our nation decrease its reliance on foreign-sourced and non-renewable petroleum."

The USDA BioPreferred program was created by the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (2002 Farm Bill), and expanded by the Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 (2008 Farm Bill). The purpose is to increase the purchase and use of biobased products. The United States Department of Agriculture manages the program. Products that meet the USDA BioPreferred program requirements carry a distinctive label for easier identification by the consumer. To learn more about the USDA Certified Biobased Product Label please visit, and follow on Twitter at

Laurel BioComposite Bio-Res products are able to economically raise the renewable or “green” content of plastic products by as much as 40 percent. The biomaterial is available in pellet formulations which blend easily with polyethylene, polypropylene, polylactic acid and polyhydroxyalkanoates matrices. The product has been tested to replace 20 to 40 percent of the neat resin in a variety of manufacturing processes. Master batch pellets provide easy drop in to thermoplastics formulations. Bio-Res PE is especially suited for single-use products as well as applications for a variety of industries including shipping, lawn and garden, agriculture and automotive.