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ISSN 1862-5258


04 | 2014

Highlights Biocomposites | 10

BIOBOTTLE Development project for dairy bottles, p. 22



Vol. 9

Blow Moulding | 22

1 countries

... is read in 9

Caring for nature! Be green! The use of a renewable raw material was an obvious step for Papyrus Supplies as it highlights their ecological awareness and commitment. The garbage bags supplied by Papyrus Supplies are made from Green PE, a renewable raw material. As these

bags maintain the same properties as

their oil-based counterparts they are a suitable sustainable substitute for consumers. Of course, these bags once used, can be recycled into the existing polyethylene recycling stream, thus closing the loop.

Garbage Bags made from I‘m green™ Polyethylene

For more information visit •


dear readers In the last issue I asked whether the mass balance approach is a good idea or a nice trick to be able to offer renewable or biobased plastics such as PE or PP. Both Sabic and BASF have taken such approaches. Well, I’m happy that we can publish the first comments from the nova institute, INRO and ISCC on pp. 44. And I’m confident to get more feedback for our upcoming issues. But this is not the only political topic in this issue. Even if the paper, introduced on page 30, discusses the incentive regulation for biofuels versus material use of biomass in the European Union, the basic thoughts are important enough to be read across the globe. From the material side we have a focus on Biocomposites, showing that research and development has significantly advanced in the recent past compared to the wood-flour filled automotive door panels that have been around for decades (rather for cost reasons than the renewable materials aspect). The other editorial focus topics in this issue are blow moulding and bottle applications, rounded off by a basic introduction of the stretch blow moulding process to manufacture (mainly) PET but also PLA or (in future) PEF bottles. Please also note our two new conferences, scheduled for 2015: For May 12th and 13th we would like to invite you to the bio!pac conference on biobased packaging. It will be held in the Novotel in Amsterdam and the Call for papers is now open. The second new conference for which we are already also accepting proposals for presentations is bio!car, covering biobased materials in automotive applications. This conference will be held in the autumn of 2015, most probably in the automotive capital of Germany: Stuttgart. Both conferences offer of course opportunities for sponsoring and table-top exhibitors. For now we hope you enjoy the summer, and of course … reading bioplastics MAGAZINE

Sincerely yours Michael Thielen

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bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol.9





Biocomposites Composites go green: Composites Europe . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Alea iacta est: WoodForce . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 Green composites: The coming New Age . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 Natural fibre composites for injection mouldings . . . . . . . . . 15 Thin-walled composite structures . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16 Flax for high-tech applications . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18 Editorial . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3

From Science & Research

News. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 - 8

Composites based on soybean hull . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20

Application News. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28

Blow Moulding

Glossary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39 Event Calendar. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 49

Biodegradable packages for dairy products . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22

Suppliers Guide. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46

Avantium raises investment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23

Companies in this issue . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50

100 million PLA bottles per year . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24 Blow moulded air ducts made from bio-PA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25



bio!pac . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9

Stretch blow moulding . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .26

bio!car. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 Composites Europe. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10


Event Calendar. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 49

Material use first! Proposal for a reform . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30 The bioplastics industry in Korea . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42

Market Green Premium: Who is willing to pay more? . . . . . . . . . . . . 33

Report Generation Zero: Bioplastics were the very beginning“ . . . . 36



bioplastics MAGAZINE [02/14] Vol. 9

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PlantBottle in the spotlight on Capitol Hill Coke’s PlantBottle technology was recognized last month on Capitol Hill as one of the innovations helping to fuel the bio-based manufacturing boom.

packages in 31 countries. The company aims to convert 100 % of new PET plastic used in its bottles to PlantBottle technology by 2020.

Scott Vitters, general manager of the global PlantBottle platform, testified at a hearing for the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry in Washington, D.C. The June 17 session examined the role products made from agriculture crops instead of petroleumbased chemicals are playing in revitalizing American manufacturing, growing the economy and creating jobs.

To continue to meet global demand for The Coca-Cola Company’s beverages, maintain public trust and sustain growth, we must transition from traditional, fossil-based materials to renewable, recyclable bio-based sources.

PlantBottle, Vitters explained, plays a vital role in achieving the company’s long-term, zero-waste vision. PlantBottle looks, functions and recycles just like traditional PET plastic, but – being made up to 30% by wt. from plants - with a lower dependence on fossil fuels and a lighter environmental footprint. This innovation has removed more than 190,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions since 2009, the equivalent of 500,000 barrels of oil. Vitters highlighted the partnerships that have enabled Coca-Cola distribute more than 25 billion PlantBottle

Following the hearing, the PlantBottle team participated in a “Spotlight on Innovation” expo, which highlighted more than 30 innovators representing 25 states leading the charge in bio-based manufacturing. The team spoke one-on-one with a Senators and Congressional staff members, who were complimentary of the PlantBottle program and commended Coke’s leadership on the development of bio-based products. MT An archived webcast of the hearing can be viewed at (Source: Coca-Cola Journey, Unbottled-blog)

Meredian harvests first locally grown canola Meredian, Inc. (Bainbridge, Georgia, USA) harvested its first 400 hectares (1,000 acres) locally sourced canola crop in Decatur County, Georgia in the second half of May. The canola oil used in Meredian’s production is the single most important, yet costly factor in their manufacturing process. While theoretically, the company can use any plant derived oil to convert carbon into biopolymers, canola is the perfect option because it possesses the ability to be grown locally, which cuts down on unnecessary and costly transportation steps. Growing locally stimulates Georgia’s economy, while allowing Meredian to continue their mission of manufacturing biopolymers from renewable, natural resources that equal or exceed petroleum-based plastics in price and performance. “We are thrilled about the successful harvest of our pilot canola fields,” said Paul Pereira, Executive Chairman of the Board of Directors at Meredian, Inc. “The first harvest marks a major milestone in meeting the full scale needs of this facility.”

USDA certified scales and seed analysis equipment were used to check and verify that the crop’s moisture content was within specifications. In some parts of the 400 hectares that were planted, more than 2,4 tonnes were produced per hectare (43 bushels/acre). Despite the less than desirable conditions the crop endured over the season, the canola was healthy and undamaged. The success of this season supports Meredian’s decision in choosing locally grown canola as their major source to produce their completely biodegradable PHA. The seeds that are not crushed to meet production needs will be used for next year’s harvest, which will be planted this fall and set to be harvested in Spring 2015. Based on the interest of farmers, Meredian expects between 4,000 and 6,000 hectares of canola fields to be planted this fall for Meredian. Eventually, the company hopes to utilize 40,000 hectares to grow canola in order to sustain the capacity of their 27,000 tonnes (60 million pound) fermentation facility.MT


bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9



Heinz says tomato, Ford says tom-auto However it’s pronounced, the humble tomato is what has brought these two companies together. Researchers at Ford and Heinz are investigating the use of tomato fibers in developing sustainable, composite materials for use in vehicle manufacturing. Specifically, dried tomato skins could become the wiring brackets in a Ford vehicle or the storage bin a Ford customer uses to hold coins and other small objects. “We are exploring whether this food processing byproduct makes sense for an automotive application,” said Ellen Lee, plastics research technical specialist for Ford. “Our goal is to develop a strong, lightweight material that meets our vehicle requirements, while at the same time reducing our overall environmental impact.” Nearly two years ago, Ford began collaborating with Heinz, The Coca-Cola Company, Nike Inc. and Procter & Gamble to accelerate development of a 100 % plantbased plastic to be used to make everything from fabric to packaging and with a lower environmental impact than petroleum-based packaging materials currently in use. At Heinz, researchers were looking for innovative ways to recycle and repurpose peels, stems and seeds from the more than two million tons of tomatoes the company uses annually to produce its best-selling product: Heinz Ketchup. Leaders at Heinz turned to Ford. “We are delighted that the technology has been validated,” said Vidhu Nagpal, associate director, packaging R&D for Heinz. “Although we are in the very early stages of research, and many questions remain, we are excited about the possibilities this could produce for both Heinz and Ford, and the advancement of sustainable 100% plant-based plastics.” Ford’s commitment to reduce, reuse and recycle is part of the company’s global sustainability strategy to lessen its environmental footprint while accelerating development of fuel-efficient vehicle technology worldwide. In recent years, Ford has increased its use of recycled nonmetal and bio-based materials. With cellulose fiber-reinforced console components and rice hull-filled electrical cowl brackets introduced in the last year, Ford’s bio-based portfolio now includes eight materials in production. Other examples are coconut-based composite materials, recycled cotton material for carpeting and seat fabrics, and soy foam seat cushions and head restraints.KL


bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9


Trellis Earth To Acquire Cereplast Assets Trellis Earth (Wilsonville, Oregon, USA) acquired a 110,000 square foot (10,000 m²) bioplastics production facility in June in Seymour, Indiana from the defunct Cereplast which is being liquidated in bankruptcy court. Trellis earth paid $2.6 million (€ 1.9 million) for a factory, patent portfolio, and inventory with a replacement value over $8 million (€ 5.9 million). This acquisition will fast track the company’s large scale injection molding and thermoforming operations in the United States, as they bring in new finishing equipment to this facility in the weeks and months ahead. Trellis Earth announced they will be launching an all-new product line with over 35 new cutlery SKUs, new clamshells, and many other thermoformed products in what promises to be the pre-eminent vertically integrated bioplastics factory — anywhere!

“This marks a new chapter in our company’s evolution and bodes well for the greening of the take-out component of the American food service industry,” said Bill Collins, founder, Chairman and President of Trellis Earth Products, Inc. in a blog on the company’s website. All Trellis Earth® brand products made with their sustainable corn starch blend, which they will produce in Seymour, Indiana, have been scientifically proven by a 3rd party research company to have a lower carbon footprint in absolute terms than all comparable products made with any alternative, conventional petrochemical plastic. MT

Biobased PET cups at SeaWorld In mid July SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment™ (Orlando, Florida, USA) debuted the first refillable plastic cup made from bio-PET. Now available in all SeaWorld® and Busch Gardens parks across the U.S., the reusable, 100% recyclable plastic cup is manufactured using Coca-Cola’s proprietary PlantBottle™ packaging technology. “Working together, our two companies are using our resources and reach to inspire people to make a difference,” said SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment Corporate Vice President of Culinary Operations Andrew Ngo. “Our friends at The Coca-Cola Company share our commitment to conservation, our passion for the planet, and our innovative approach to consumer experiences. Even more important, this appeals to our guests, who expect and reward recycling and sustainability.”

Colorful in-park murals and point-of-purchase displays promoting environmental advocacy will help inform park guests of the new product. SeaWorld eventually plans to use Coca-Cola’s PlantBottle technology in the manufacture of many of its souvenir cups and is actively exploring opportunities for its potential use in the development of other merchandise. (Source: PRNewswire, Photo: PRNewsFoto/SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment) MT

SeaWorld’s switch to PlantBottle plastic in its refillable cups is expected to remove 35 tonnes of CO2 emissions annually - the equivalent of saving more than 80 barrels of oil a year. SeaWorld takes Coca-Cola’s unique PlantBottle technology to a new level, creating the first commercially available consumer product: a refillable plastic cup. “Once we fully realized the power of PlantBottle technology, we knew it had real-world, global applications well beyond our own products,” said Scott Vitters, general manager, PlantBottle packaging platform, The Coca-Cola Company. “This collaboration with SeaWorld demonstrates that PlantBottle technology can be applied anywhere that PET plastic is traditionally used, but with a lighter footprint on the planet.”

bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9



Visit our new online platform for NEWS Tap into the online resources of the new bioplastics MAGAZINE news platform! You want to stay informed on a day-by-day basis? This has become much easier now. The new “Newsplatform” at now offers a new online resource targeted at readers seeking a medium that answers the need for reliable news and informative content with immediate appeal. Visitors will find new news-items every day now. Together with the printed bioplastics MAGAZINE, and the new, biweekly bioplastics MAGAZINE newsletter, it offers a platform for professionals in the industry to reach out to prospective partners, suppliers and customers across the globe. The bioplastics MAGAZINE newsletter reaches a targeted audience of some 7000 international bioplastics professionals across all continents. The platform offers readers up-to-date news and advertisers the power to create integrated campaigns, built on interaction between the different media channels and taking advantage of the different strengths of each. For advertisers, a perfect means to add value to opportunity.

Visit (without www) every day to stay up-to-date.

Braskem invests € 10 million in new research centre for biobased chemicals Braskem, the leading producer of thermoplastic resins in the Americas, inaugurated a new Research and Development Laboratory in early June in Campinas, São Paulo, Brazil. With BRL 30 million (EUR 10 million) in funds for 2014, the space will focus on developing projects involving biotechnology and chemical processes derived from renewable resources, which will further strengthen the company’s commitment to sustainable technological alternatives. “Braskem has been investing heavily in innovation. We want Brazil to become a reference in the research and development of technological routes that take advantage of the country’s competitive advantages in renewable resources. Investing in new technology is essential, since it creates an environment that helps leverage the best ideas and projects and creates a virtuous cycle of development for both Braskem and the country’s manufacturing industry. It’s the best way for us to stay competitive,” said Edmundo Aires, Vice-President of Innovation and Technology at Braskem. The laboratory has a staff of 33 researchers who will work on developing biochemical and chemical routes and purification systems and seek out viable solutions on an industrial scale. Key projects include technologies for producing green propylene and butadiene, metabolic engineering of microorganisms and continuous improvement in biobased ethylene, which is used to make Braskem’s green plastic. In addition to its specific competencies, the lab brings together various pieces of high-performance equipment, such as the High Throughput Screening Robot (HTS), which is the most modern automated robot in use in South America and the first used for this application in Brazil, which is capable of multiplying the work of a researcher by 1,000 fold. Innovation is one of the main pillars of Braskem’s growth. In 2013, the company invested BRL 200 million (EUR 67 million) in research and innovation projects, which is the same amount projected for this year. Expenditures are being made in specialized professionals who are capable of working with highly complex management and technical processes, as well as in new equipment and facilities. MT


bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9

bio PAC bio CAR biobased packaging

Biobased materials for automotive applications



12/13 may 2015

novotel amsterdam

fall 2015

» Packaging is necessary. » Packaging protects the precious goods during transport and storage. » Packaging conveys important messages to the consumer.

» The amount of plastics in modern cars is constantly increasing. » Plastics and composites help achieving light-weighting targets. » Plastics offer enormous design opportunities.

» Good packaging helps to increase the shelf life.

» Plastics are important for the touch-and-feel and the safety of cars.



Packaging does not necessarily need to be made from petroleum based plastics.

consumers, suppliers in the automotive industry and OEMs are more and more looking for biobased alternatives to petroleum based materials.

biobased packaging » is packaging made from mother nature‘s gifts. » is packaging made from renewable resources.

That‘s why bioplastics MAGAZINE is organizing this new conference on biobased materials for the automotive industry.

» is packaging made from biobased plastics, from plant residues such as palm leaves or bagasse. » offers incredible opportunities. CALL FOR PAPERS NOW OPEN

in cooperation with Biobased Packaging Innovations www.

Biocomposites / Events

Composites go green: Biocomposites at COMPOSITES EUROPE 2014

Info: 1: The study can be downloaded form


aterials made from wood flour, cotton, flax, jute or even hemp are already being deployed as compression moulding components, especially by the automotive industry – with other trades increasingly following suit. Biocomposites are steadily gaining in importance for the future of the manufacturing sector, and COMPOSITES EUROPE 2014 is set to present the full potential of these bio-based composite materials from 7th to 9th October in Düsseldorf, Germany. A number of exhibitors specialising in biocomposites will showcase their product solutions at COMPOSITES EUROPE. Michael Carus, the managing director of the novainstitute (Hürth, Germany), which will also be exhibiting at Composites Europe 2014, already sees a positive trajectory for biocomposites being used in a range of manufacturing applications. “In 2012, about 100 companies in the EU produced more than 350,000 tonnes of wood- and naturalfibres reinforced biocomposites. The majority of these products were extruded into decking using wood flour and wood fibres (wood-plastic composites, WPC). Natural fibres are deployed primarily for use as compression-moulding parts in car interiors. In 2012, about 90,000 tonnes of these natural fibre composites (NFC) were used by automobile manufacturers across Europe. The combined share of WPC and NFC biocomposites has already reached 15% of the total composites market. In a recent study1, the nova-institute laid out a number of different scenarios for the future unfolding of the biocomposites landscape. Says Carus: “A favourable political and economic framework has been creating clear forward momentum, particularly for injection and compression moulding, which will replace significant amounts of conventional composite materials. This would greatly reduce greenhouse gas emissions. At COMPOSITES EUROPE, the institute will participate in a group stand focussed on bio-based composites while offering project development and consultation services in areas such as bio-based materials, techno-economic evaluation and eco balancing.

Key players at COMPOSITES EUROPE What’s more, the industry’s leading enterprises will be on hand as well. So far, exhibitors in Composites Europe’s biocomposites segment include the Belgian companies Armacell Benelux, Basaltex nv and Beologic. Additionally, the Swiss firm Bcomp, the European Industrial Hemp Association based in Hürth, the Dresden/Germany nonprofit Forum Technologie und Wirtschaft e.V. and the weaving mill Güth & Wolf (Gütersloh/Germany) will present their solutions in this area. The roster also includes Isowood from Rudolstadt and Jakob Winter from Nauheim (both Germany). Displays will focus primarily on materials based on wood and natural fibres such as flax and hemp. Biowert from Brensbach/Germany will present materials containing meadow grass. On show will be natural-fibre needle felt nonwovens for compression moulding parts as well as a variety of product solutions made from naturalfibre compression moulding parts – specialty cases, for example – and technical foams and insulation materials. MT


bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9




Call for proposals

til Please let us know un

August 31st:

and does rvice or development is se t, uc od pr e th at Wh 1. n an award development should wi or ce rvi se t, uc od pr is 2. Why you think th ganisation does oposed) company or or pr e th (or ur yo at Wh 3. ay also (approx 1 page) and m s rd wo 0 50 ed ce ex t d/or Your entry should no marketing brochures an t be s, ple m sa , hs ap gr oto The 5 nominees mus be supported with ph (cannot be sent back). ion tat en m cu do l ica techn 30 second videoclip prepared to provide a ded from

try form can be downloa More details and an en www.bioplasticsmagaz

The Bioplastics Award will be presented during the 9th European Bioplastics Conference December 2013, Brussels, Belgium

Sponsors welcome, please contact

Enter your own product, service or development, or nominate your favourite example from another organisation

supported by

bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/13] Vol. 8



Alea iacta est For a new generation of biocomposites


he innovative Wood Force technology was developed by Sonae Industria SGPS (Maia, Portugal), a leading wood panel manufacturer. Sonae has 50 years of wood processing experience with 24 plants internationally. The main objective behind Wood Force was to develop an engineered wood fiber dice technology as the leading natural fiber reinforcement solution to substitute glass fiber reinforced compound. A secondary market target is as a replacement for mineral fillers in weight reduction applications for composites. The idea was to develop a mass produced and cost effective, easy and ready to use, reliable and consistent natural fiber technology for the compounding and injection molding industries. The target was the thermoplastic compound market in automotive, packaging, appliance, electronics and consumer markets by manufacturing and supplying locally the same product worldwide to multinational OEMs.

The Innovation The innovative Wood Force technology is using the well known MDF industrial process to mass produce refined softwood fibres. Which are then seized with a patented dispersing technology. In the next step the resulting panel is diced for easy gravimetric dosing in the process of thermoplastic extrusion. Thus, a significant reinforcement

Tensile Modulus 100%

can be achieved by keeping a high Length/Diameter ratio of the dispersed wood fibre after injection. WoodForce is a significant breakthrough as it delivers on three major requirements to succeed in today’s complex industrial environment: WoodForce delivers superior performance. It is an industrially friendly material, and WoodForce is environmentally fit.

Mechanical Properties Independent research institutions have validated the superior mechanical properties of the new material. The end result is an engineered wood fibre delivering great improvements in tensile and flexural performance. WoodForce is compatible with the major polymers, PP and PE, as well as ABS, TPE, PLA and PBS. However, today, performance is no longer strictly about mechanical properties. Industries have to take a holistic view on technology and take into account issues such carbon footprint, end-of-life management, weight reduction... The MDF production process guarantees WoodForce dice are always consistently performing, contaminant-free with stable fibre sizes and have constant moisture content yearround. MDF plants have a very stable wood fibre mix. Timber is historically sourced from a natural wood basket within a 100-150 km radius around the plants.

Woodforce Glass

80% 60% Izod Notched Impact


Tensile Strength




Flexural Strength

Flexural Modulus

Old Map 12

bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9


Sustainability 100 90 80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0



New Map


WoodForce: 5mm x 5mm x 3mm pellets of refined wood fibres

Enhanced Design WoodForce has a major benefit in relation to pigments and dyes. The result is an enhanced use of colouration that provides significant design opportunities in multiple colours. The colouration of the compound is a built in process to dye the product during the production process. Using automotive applications as an example, WoodForce Black provides a superior finish on moulded parts (hiding the fibre completely) and opens up the potential for use in visible applications.

Weight Reduction Wood fibre allows a significant weight reduction of reinforced plastics with equal mechanical properties relative to similar applications with glass or minerals. Wood fibre density is significantly less than that of glass fibre and mineral fillers. At equal mechanical properties, WoodForce reinforced parts or products have a weight reduction potential of up to 15%. Weight reduction is a significant area of strategic importance in automotive applications currently.

Easy to use / Ready to use Industrial processing of natural fibre had been a major barrier to mass-market applications. Therefore the product was designed with the compounding industry in mind. It is compatible with existing extrusion equipment, and compatible with global and large-scale industrial operations. The dice are very easy to dose during the extrusion process without complications as it is used with standard dosing equipment and does not require any chopping or preparation. It is easy to meter with good flow ability, so that bio-sourced reinforcement does not result in inefficient compounding operations.

The production process consumes far less energy than that of glass fibre production. The wood fibre is sourced locally within 100-150 km of the plants and wood fibre, by its very nature, is a renewable resource capturing and storing CO2 thus contributing to improve the environment. Thermoplastics reinforced with WoodForce have a far superior recyclability than fibreglass filled compounds. After two cycles, the material retains a much higher level of mechanical properties than glass fibre compounds. At the end of its life, thermoplastic reinforced with wood fibre can be burnt to generate energy.

WoodForce is a great partner for bioplastics Significant progress has been made in the development of better performing and cost effective thermoplastics derived from renewable and sustainable vegetable sources. The logical reinforcing partners cannot be the traditional glass fibre solutions. In order to preserve the more favourable carbon footprint profile, bioplastics will need natural fibre partners like WoodForce in order to design a 100% sustainable solution. MT

WoodForce is currently commercialized in its natural or black colour. It is also available with a standard moisture content (5-10%) as well as pre-dried (less than 2% moisture content) as a ready-to-use product.

Renewable and Sustainable The use of WoodForce reduces petroleum consumption, increases the use of renewable resources, helps better manage the carbon cycle, and may contribute to reducing adverse environmental and health impacts. Sonae IndĂşstria recognises and supports forest certification organisations, purchasing FSC as well as PEFC certified wood.

bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9



Green composites: The coming New Age


ast few decades have seen significant growth in the use of high strength fiber reinforced composites fabricated using carbon, aramid and glass fibers and reins such as expoxy, unsaturated polyester or polyurethanes. However, both fibers and resins used in these composites are made using petroleum, a non-sustainable raw material. In addition, most commercial composites are also non-degradable. This poses a serious disposal problem. While there are some efforts to solve the disposability issues through incineration (to recover energy), recycling (grinding into powder for use as filler) or reclaiming fibers (for secondary applications), we are still far away from having an eco-friendly end-of-life solution. Over 90% of the composites, at present, end up in landfills after their intended life. With ever-growing use of composites the end-of-life issue is only expected to get bigger and increasingly difficult and expensive.

Greener Composites Significant research conducted in greening of plastics and composites has led to the development of new generations of plastics and composites that are not only derived from sustainable plant-based resources but are fully biodegradable. As a result, many plant-based fibers such as ramie, sisal, hemp, flax, jute, bamboo, sugarcane bagasse and others are increasingly being used with non-degradable resins such as polypropylene (PP), nylons, polyesters, etc., to form composites that may be called greener composites.

Green Composites Research is also being conducted to develop fully green composites that combine biodegradable fibers and sustainably derived resins such as polylactic acid (PLA), polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs) and their copolymers, polybutylene succinate (PBS), etc., as well as those derived from plant-based starches, proteins and lipids or oils. Composites based on crosslinked oils (non-degradable), being inexpensive, have hit the markets, e.g. for parts of John Deere tractors.


bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9

John Deere 6M Series Tractors (Photo: Courtesy John Deere)

Advanced Green Composites A new process to produce high strength liquid crystalline cellulose (LCC) fibers developed at the Groningen University (The Netherlands) has opened up the possibility to make high strength green composites by combining them with biodegradable resins. The LCC fibers have high stiffness (over 40 GPa) and strength (over 1.7 GPa). Being in continuous form conventional fiber placing machines can be easily used for these fibers. Composites made using the LCC fibers and soy protein based resins have been shown to possess excellent strength and toughness to be termed as ‘Advanced Green Composites’. LCC fibers treated by KOH (potassium hydroxide) solution, a process similar to mercerization used for cotton fibers, under tension have shown to significantly improve their strength and modulus by increasing fiber molecular orientation and crystallinity and thus increasing the composite properties further. For example, composites of LCC fibers (41.5% by wt) made with soy protein based resins resulted in strength of over 625 MPa. With fiber volume of 65%, which is common for most composites, the estimated strength of these advanced green composites was over 1 GPa. Interestingly the toughness of such composites was comparable to those based on Kevlar® fibers which are commonly used for ballistic applications. We can expect many such new developments which are at the research stage to come to market in the near future. These fully sustainable green composites, while easily protected during their use, can be biodegraded or composted at the end of their life and hence nothing has to go to the landfills. In fact, when composted, these composites can complete the nature’s intended carbon cycle. Sustainability, green chemistry, cradle-to-cradle design, industrial ecology, etc. are not just newly coined words but have become the guiding principles for the development of new generation of green materials. Composites are no exception to this new paradigm. As major manufacturers embrace these developments, the green composites can only be expected to play a major role in greening the future products. MT


Natural fibre composites for injection moulding


ext to their standard material classes ARBOFORM® and ARBOBLEND®, Tecnaro have managed to develop natural fibre composites optimized for processing by injection moulding – ARBOFILL®. In the meantime further production processes such as extrusion blow moulding and thermoforming were successfully carried out with grades of this material class.

These materials are especially interesting for applications where good heat resistance, scratch and creep resistance are required, while an economical substitution of fossil resources is desired. Additionally they offer an appealing appearance, often intuitively understood as natural by the end consumer, without any further explanation. While compounds of natural fibres and polymers are already fairly common in applications such as decking, fencing and fascias, produced by the extrusion processes, injection moulded parts are still a rather rare sight, although very interesting for a large number of uses. Assuming proper pre-drying (which is necessary for many standard polymers, such as ABS and polyesters) the material can be easily processed with comparable processing properties to standard polyolefins, gaining a smooth surface at moderate mould temperatures of 30°- 40°C. As the material can be processed at slightly lower temperatures, additional energy savings in the production can be achieved. That of course comes on top of the replacement of fossil resources, which can be as high as almost 100% when the matrix material is also adjusted (at Tecnaro found among the Arboform and Arboblend grades).

(Photo: Samas)

The performance and processing properties described above have already led to several products made of Arbofill In series production they are mainly household articles (photo) and stationery, but the material is also found in applications such as furniture. Before a major player in the food preparation and storage business accepted a special series made of Arbofill, the material was (literally) put to the acid test. Starting with food contact conformity, through thousands of cycles in the dish washer and completed by the above mentioned tests on resistance to several aggressive chemicals. The Brazilian household goods company Coza have used Arbofill materials in their portfolio for several years now, and it has properly withstood the tropical climate since 2009. The compost bin introduced by Rotho (photo) is a very nice example of a coloured natural fibre composite, which allows for an even broader aesthetic appearances than the application of different fibre grades. The compatibility of Arbofill with standard polyolefins enables the use of common master batches and leading to easy colouring.

(Photo: Rotho)

(Photo: Coza)

Good scratch and especially creep resistance could be proven in the application of a backrest for an office chair (photo). Compared to unreinforced and unfilled polyolefin the low warpage and shrinkage are also crucial in this part. Aesthetic aspects played a major role when one famous Italian fashion brand introduced this material for their hangers - Benetton. This underlines the innovative and appealing character that natural fibre reinforced composites can show, with a premium touch compared to conventional plastics. Through several national and international R&D projects as well as in-house development, Tecnaro is continuously working (among many others) on the improvement of natural fibre reinforced materials, one of which is Arbofill. The company is testing various newly available fibres and fibre qualities for their addition to the property portfolio, and also investigating improvements in the compounding process.

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Thin-walled composite structures

normalized specific flexural stiffness [-]

with improved stiffness- and damping properties


atural fibre composites have gained significant attention over the last couple of years. However, these novel materials struggle to establish themselves at a large scale in the composites industry, despite their outstanding specific mechanical properties. This is mostly due to the fact that natural fibre preform suppliers have been very much focusing on mimicking their glass fibre preform counterparts, at significantly higher price-performance ratios often beyond the acceptance of the market.

carbon carbon + powerRibs flax + powerRibs

1.2 1.1 1.0 0.9 0.8 0.7 0.002





loss factor, ξ [-]

Figure 2. Plot of normalized specific flexural stiffness vs. loss factor.

Fig. 1: Dry Bcomp powerRibs lying on a biax flax fabric (left) and example of a part after impregnation and consolidation with an epoxy resin (right)


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Since its founding in 2011, Bcomp (Fribourg, Switzerland) has been focusing on understanding the specificity of natural fibers and their composites, and developing corresponding technologies bringing striking benefits – in addition to the lower ecological footprint – to the end product. Bcomp’s strong R&D focus has further been strengthened through nationally- and EU funded collaborations with leading academic partners, such as the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne (EPFL), The University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland FHNW, or the Katholic University of Leuven (Belgium). In only three years, Bcomp managed to implement their product solutions in various industries such as Sports and Leisure, Consumer Electronics and Mobility, achieving thereby a significant market share and boosting the company’s sales. Bcomp’s powerRibs technology (pat. pend.) consists of a natural fibre grid fabric resulting in ribs in the millimeter thickness range on the surface of composite parts, leading to a significant increase of the bending stiffness of thin fibre composite shell elements by adding minimal weight. During the two past years, Bcomp developed the ideal flax yarn and textile process for the powerRibs technology with its partners, taking maximum advantage of the flax’ high stiffness-toweight ratio and low density. Recently, the product has attracted a lot of attention in the Composites industry, and was awarded the Swiss Excellence Product Award 2013 and the Certificate of Material Excellence 2013 by renowned US material consultant Material ConneXion. In parallel, Bcomp is currently working on the qualification of the material with global leaders of the Automotive industry. An example of dry powerRibs fabric and its integration into a composite part is shown in Fig. 1.


By Christian Fischer managing director, co-founder Bcomp Ltd., Fribourg, Switzerland

Prior Bcomp studies and market applications have shown that the company’s natural composite solutions offer a great potential for the use in thin-walled composite structures requiring a high level of damping. This is due to the flax fibres’ unique combination of high stiffness-to-weight ratio, their significantly lower density when compared to carbon fibres, and their very high damping properties.

the constrained layer damping approach studied within this project, and the powerRibs can be further optimized to increase the flexural stiffness of the samples using this method. Furthermore, further studies would need to analyse influence of temperature, different stress- or strain levels, and further specifications in the use for given space applications, to name only few.

In the framework of the Swiss Space Center’s Call for Ideas 2013, Bcomp has proposed to develop a new hybrid composite solution. By mixing carbon- and flax fibres in a specific way, and using Bcomp’s powerRibs technology, the aim consisted of developing a composite material with a so far unparalleled combination of specific flexural stiffnessand damping properties. The resulting thin-walled material would offer a novel alternative for structural shell elements in lightweight satellite structures, where high stiffness- and strength, low weight, and high damping properties are of high importance. Using two different strategies, namely (i) carbon-flaxcarbon micro-sandwich structures for enhanced stiffness and constrained layer damping in the flax layers, and (ii) Bcomp’s powerRibs technology, using flax fibre grids for the highly efficient reinforcement of composite shell elements, eight different layups were defined. Their specific flexural stiffness and damping performance were measured and compared with each other, showing a potential increase of both parameters using approach (i) by approx. 15 %, respectively. Approach (ii) yielded very significant damping improvements, with a specimen outperforming the reference carbon sample by 250 % at an equivalent specific stiffness. The results are summarized in Figure 2. While this study has clearly demonstrated the great potential of such material systems in space applications requiring high stiffness and damping at low weight, some phenomena still need to be understood, and there is a great potential to further optimize the presented concepts. Additional tests would be needed to understand whether the surface damping approach – the powerRibs being an extreme example of it – would generally yield better results with these carbon-flax hybrid composite structures than

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lax fibres are offering the best mechanical properties on the natural fibres market and are thus increasingly used as an environmentally friendly reinforcement for different applications. Their specific properties, which are higher than those of glass fibres, come in combination with interesting cost and weight reductions.

Flax for high-tech applications

Since flax fibres are easily and massively available near the facilities of Lineo NV (St Martin du Tilleul, France), the company is focused on the use of flax fibre for the development of its products. “We found that low environmental impact is not the only advantage of flax fibres. Their intrinsic technical properties can also make significant contributions to improving the performance of the finished product,” says Lineo’s CEO Francois Vanfleteren. Lineo’s portfolio comprises FlaxPreg™, FlaxPly™ and FlaxTape™, introduced in the following examples by some interesting business cases.

FlaxPreg With the help of FlaxPreg, a new method of combining the damping properties of flax with the well-known high performance of carbon fibre is being used to make bicycles which will dampen vibration and provide more comfort for the riders. The ultimate technical goal was to combine the damping properties of flax with the well-known high performance of carbon fibre without sacrificing mechanical performance. Using hybrid technology to combine flax fibres and carbon fibres, up to 25% of flax fibres have been used for different parts of bicycles with a flax/epoxy commercial prepreg (preimpregnated composite fibres), made from a unique yarn treatment and impregnation process, which overcomes past technology problems of working with flax. When optimally engineered, a carbon-flax structure can exhibit significantly higher damping behaviour than its full-carbon counterpart of equal weight. In addition to the increased damping the right use of flax layers simultaneously improves the buckling strength and stiffness of the composite part by up to 25%. Once more, this is due to the lower density of flax fibres. Thus, when replacing an intermediate carbon layer by a flax layer of equal weight, the distance between the remaining top and bottom carbon layers is increased, resulting in a carbonflax-carbon sandwich structure with higher stiffness than the full-carbon reference part.

Shock, Impact, Force

High Vibration in carbon Damped Vibration thanks to FlaxPly

“Initially working with FlaxPreg was quite challenging, but the hurdles have been overcome, and now it is possible for new products to contain more FlaxPreg“, said Francois.

Carbon layer


FlaxPly Carbon layer


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Intrinsic flame resistance is another property which will be explored and will certainly make flax fibres attractive to other markets, such as transport. Major markets to benefit from the new eco-friendly technology are sports, leisure, furniture and transport, with cycling and tennis being the first sectors where the technology has been put into commercial production.

FlaxPly is a family of semi-finished flax-fibre products available in (UD) unidirectional and balanced fabrics. The products are compliant with main thermoset resins on the market and are suitable for many applications in marine

Biocomposites or architectural markets. FlaxPly can be used with all wet processes such as infusion, hand lay-up, RTM, VARTM, etc. Lineo supplied FlaxPly reinforcements for the first ever racing boat prototype to incorporate up to 50% of natural flax fibre in the composite structure. The boat, which has been called the Araldite takes its name from Huntsman’s award winning Araldite® range of products. It is a 6.5m long and 3m wide, ergonomic, lightweight Mini Transat racing boat prototype – the smallest offshore racing boat allowed to cross the Atlantic. Designed by Regis Garcia to showcase the possibilities of incorporating flax fibres into the composite structure of an open sea sailing prototype, the boat was built at the wellknown IDB Marine de Tregunc shipyard in Brittany, France. With acceptance and funding received from C.I.P.A.LIN, the French Interprofessional Committee for the Agricultural Production of Flax, the project has been completed in just over 12 months.

FlaxTape FlaxTape is the best flax reinforcement on the market, in terms of performance and price. The cost of yarn production is prohibitive. The manufacture of a yarn involves several processing steps. For example, the production of a conventional flax yarn usually requires scutching, hackling, four to six passes of drawing and the final spinning operations. The cost of the final spinning operation alone typically accounts about half of the total cost of the whole fibre-to-yarn process. The weaving of yarns into a fabric is another labour-intensive and costly process, involving warp preparation, threading, weft preparation and weaving. Significant cost savings can be realized if a highly aligned reinforcement structure can be produced without involving the expensive spinning and weaving operation. Lineo worked to find processes for converting fibres directly into a unidirectional non-woven tape that can compete with unidirectional yarns and woven fabrics in final composite mechanical performance. The result is FlaxTape, a tape of unidirectional natural flax fibres that offers a number of advantages because it is produced without involving any spinning and weaving operations: FlaxTape doesn’t need treatment to improve wettability because its wettability is already very good. The flat product needs less resin than other traditional products. In comparison to flax fabric, which cannot be produced lighter than 150 g/m², FlaxTape Lineo can produce very light reinforcements down to 50 g/m².

[1]: Khalfallah, M. Flax/Acrodur® sandwich panel: an innovative eco-material for automotive applications; jec composites magazine / No89 May 2014

“With the FlaxPly and the FlaxPreg, we showed that flax fibre reinforcements have a real interest in the world of composites. But compared to glass fibre reinforcements flax fabrics are too expensive. To have a chance to gain other markets (like transport), it was necessary to go further, do better. And with the FlaxTape we succeeded!”, François Vanfleteren said. Application examples are musical instruments or sandwich panels for automotive applications [1]. MT

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From Science & Research

Fig. 1: (from left): Soy hull | PHBV | PLA | PHBV-PLA-soy hull composites

Composites based on soybean hull


oybean hull is one of the most widely available field crop residues obtained during the extraction of soy bean oil. Normally it is discarded as waste or used as animal feed after enrichment. The low cost, and with high fiber content, soy hull and its utilization in green composites has the potential to create extra revenue for the farmers. Using soy hull might be another way of making affordable injection molded biocomposites with specific desired mechanical properties. Recent studies performed by the authors have focussed on the fabrication of green composites from a blend of bioplastics, polyhydroxybutyrate-co-valarate (PHBV: 70 % by weight) and polylactide (PLA: 30 % by weight) reinforced with soy hull (Fig. 1) [1]. It was observed that the composites have a low density compared to the composites reinforced with traditional fibers (carbon and glass) [2]. The hydrophilic nature of biofibers adversely affects its compatibility with the hydrophobic polymeric matrices. Also, there is a concern of agglomeration of biofibers in the biopolymer as the fiber loading increases which may lead to the poor dispersion of biofiber in the matrix phase resulting in the reduction of mechanical performance of the

Flexural strength

Impact strength

Impact strength (J/M)

Flexural strength (MPa)

70 56 42 28 14 0






Fig. 2: A: Neat PP B:PP+30% soy hull C: PHBV/PLA(70:30) D: PHBV/ PLA+30% soy hull E: mPHBV/PLA+30% soy hull


bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9

material. Different surface treatment techniques for fibers and compatibilizers have been reported to increase the fiber matrix adhesion [3]. In this work, an isocyanate terminated compatibilizer, Krasol, has been used to improve the physico-mechanical properties of the green composites. The mechanical performance of the composites were compared with the corresponding polypropylene based composites and are given in Fig. 2. From the figure it is clear that incorporation of soy hull reduced the strength of the composite which is common in case of biocomposites and is attributed to the poor adhesion between the fiber and matrices. However, a significant enhancement in the flexural strength (20%) and impact strength (35%) of the modified composite (mPHBV/ PLA/ soy hull) over corresponding unmodified composites were observed by using 10 PHR of the compatibilizer in the PHBV/PLA/soy hull composites. No enhancement in the heat deflection temperature (HDT) and stiffness of the modified composites were observed. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) images given in Fig. 3 showed the covering of fibers by polymeric matrices in modified composites. Less evidence of fiber fracture and pull out in the modified composites than in the unmodified composites suggesting a strong fiber matrix adhesion. One of the major advantages of using PHBV and PLA polymers is that they are 100% biodegradable and recyclable [4]. The biodegradation of PHBV and PLA is influenced by several factors like moisture level, temperature and pH. Since the fibers are hydrophilic they tend to absorb moisture which helps in the hydrolysis of the ester group present in the biopolymers to form oligomers [5]. These oligomers are easily degraded by micro-organisms hence have the ability to uplift the land fill shortages. Based on the observed properties of the modified green composites, some prototype materials, like storage bins and leaf rakes etc., were fabricated and are presented in Figure 4. It was found that that the composite can easily be coated with a pigment to give a desired color.

Acknowledgements: The authors appreciate the financial support provided by the Hannam Soy Bean Utilization fund2008 (HSUF) for this project.


Fig. 3: SEM images of A) PHBV-PLA/30 wt% soy hull B) m PHBV-PLA+30 wt% soy hull


4. Kooperationsforum mit Fachausstellung

By: Malaya Nanda, Sandeep Ahankari Saswata Sahoo, Manjusri Misra, Amar Mohanty University of Guelph Guelph, Ontario, Canada [1] M. R. Nanda, M. Misra, and A.K. Mohanty. Mechanical performance of soy hull reinforced bioplastic green composites: A comparison with polypropylene composites. Macromol. Mater. Eng. 2012, 297,184-194. [2] M. R. Nanda, M. Misra, and A.K. Mohanty. Performance evaluation of biofibers and their hybrids as reinforcements in bioplastic composites. Macromol.Mater.Eng.2013, 298, 779-788. [3] M. Avella, G. Bogoeva-Gaceva, A. Buzarovska, M. E. Errico, G. Gentile, A. Grozdanov, Poly(lactic acid)-based biocomposites reinforced with kenaf fibers J. Appl. Polym. Sci. 2008, 108, 3542-3551.


[5] C.Nyambo, A.K. Mohanty, M.Misra, Polylactide-based renewablegreen composites from agricultural residues and their hybrids. Biomacromolecules, 2010,11,1654-1660

Clairant GmbH

[4] M. R. Nanda, M. Misra, A. K. Mohanty, The effects of process engineering on the performance of PLA and PHBV blends Macromol. Mater. Eng., 2011, 296, 719-728.

Joseph-von-Fraunhofer-Halle Straubing, 21. Oktober 2014 ANMELDUNG


material. Netzwerk LifeScience

Fig. 4: Leaf rake, Storage bin

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Blow Moulding

Biodegradable packages for dairy products


he Technological Institute of Plastic (AIMPLAS, Valencia, Spain) has been coordinating a European two-year research project in which eight partners participate in the search for a new material, biodegradable and resistant to thermal treatments, to be used in the manufacture dairy products. The project, started in May 2013, is called BIOBOTTLE and its aim is creating multilayer and monolayer plastic bottles, as well as bags to package dairy products and which are not required to be separated from the rest of the organic wastes at the end of their brief lifespan. Europe is the biggest consumer of dairy products in the world, with an average of 261 kg per capita per year, according to the data provided by FAO in 2011. It supposes the generation of an important volume of waste, principally high density polyethylene bottles. This material is completely recyclable and its post-consumption management should not be a problem, but, in fact, only between 10% and 15% of it is recycled, according to data in 2012. Milk bottles and bags are packages which can be used only once, so a big volume of waste is generated. In addition, an exhaustive high temperature washing is required in recycling to eliminate any waste products and subsequent odours. So, it is especially interesting for the dairy industry, and an added value for the manufacturers, to introduce the elaboration of packages which can be thrown away when



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they are used, along with the rest of the organic wastes. For this, AIMPLAS and the rest of BIOBOTTLE’s partners are working on developing a biodegradable material which allows manufacturing of big multilayer bottles or bags, like the ones used for milk or milkshakes, as well as the monolayer bottles, which are smaller, used to package probiotic products.

Biodegradable and resistant to sterilization and pasteurization One of the main difficulties with which the researchers of this project must deal is finding a biodegradable material which complies with the same requirements of the traditional packages currently in use, including the resistance to thermal treatments such as the sterilization or pasteurization. For this, it is expected to modify the current commercial biodegradable materials through reactive extrusion to overcome the thermal limitations in the current biodegradable ones available in the market. BIOBOTTLE is a European Project in the Seventh Framework Programme, with a fund of €1 million. Seven companies and technological centers from five different countries work with AIMPLAS: Germany (VLB), Bélgica (OWS), Italy (CNR), Portugal (VIZELPAS y ESPAÇOPLAS) and Spain (ALMUPLAS y ALJUAN). MT

Blow Moulding

(Composing: bioplastics MAGAZINE/iStockphoto/Berc)

Avantium raises €36Mio Investment


n June 5, 2014 Avantium (Amsterdam, The Netherlands) announced that it has closed a financing round of €36 million ($50 million) from a consortium of iconic strategic players. This unique consortium consists of Swire Pacific, The Coca-Cola Company, Danone, Alpla, and existing shareholders. With this capital raise the new investors affirm their commitment to advancing PEF, Avantium’s next generation packaging material. Proceeds will be used to complete the industrial validation of PEF and finalize the engineering & design of the first commercial scale plant. As part of its strategy to use responsibly sourced plant based materials for PEF production, Avantium will validate the use of 2nd generation feedstock. Follow on investments were made by existing shareholders Sofinnova Partners, Capricorn Venture Partners, ING Corporate Investments, Aescap Venture, Navitas Capital, Aster Capital and De Hoge Dennen Capital. Tom van Aken, CEO Avantium stated: “Closing this financing round with Swire, The Coca-Cola Company, Danone, ALPLA and our existing investors underpins their commitment to making PEF bottles a commercial success. PEF is a 100% biobased plastic with superior performance compared to today’s packaging materials and represents a tremendous market opportunity. Our proprietary YXY technology to make PEF has been proven at pilot plant scale as we are now moving to commercial deployment.“ Philippe Lacamp, Swire Pacific’s Head of Sustainable Development said, “We are excited to invest in Avantium, which has an impressive track record in developing breakthrough technology. This investment aligns with our sustainable development strategy to build and develop a portfolio of promising early stage sustainable technologies to reach commercial scale.

The technology that Avantium supplies represents a pathway to the next generation of bio-based packaging materials, and has huge potential application for our existing bottling businesses.” Yu Shi, Director Next Generation Materials and Sustainability Research at The Coca-Cola Company comments, “By advancing smart technology, we believe performance and sustainability can go hand-in-hand to make a world of difference for consumers, the environment and our business. Avantium’s breakthrough technology continues to offer a promising pathway for supporting both our efforts to commercialize renewable, plant-based plastics and develop unique properties for packaging to drive new growth. We are pleased to further expand our existing partnership with Avantium through this latest investment.” Frederic Jouin, Director of Danone Nutricia Packaging Center comments: “We participate in this venture as we believe in the future of bio-based plastics for our packaging, with a potential significant reduction in carbon footprint and enhanced barrier properties compared to PET. With this investment, we re-affirm our will to launch a 100% bio-based bottle not in direct competition with food and 100% recyclable and our wish to accelerate this launch on the market.” Jan van der Eijk, Chairman of the Avantium Supervisory Board, adds; “It is a remarkable milestone in the biobased chemicals industry that large brand owners, such as The Coca-Cola Company and Danone jointly invest for the first time in a company like Avantium. Together with the investment of Swire and Alpla, it is clear to us that the market is willing to back winning technologies, such as PEF”.

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Blow Moulding

100 million PLA bottles per year


s early as 2008 bioplastics MAGAZINE reported on the North Italian mineral water company Fonti di Vinadio Spa, which bottles and sells Sant’Anna di Vinadio mineral water. In 2007 the company introduced their water in Ingeo™ PLA bottles. In those days producing about 650 million PET bottles per year, in the meantime the Italian market leader has ramped up its PLA bottle production to annually 100 million. “And still growing,” as Luca Cheri, Commercial Director of Fonti di Vinadio explained in an interview with bioplastics MAGAZINE.

Currently the so-called Bio Bottles of Fonti di Vinadio represent about 2% of the Italian water bottle market. Most of it being sold in Northwest and Northeast Italy. “About 12 million families regularly buy Sant’Anna water in Bio Bottles,” Luca explains. “There is a growing green movement in Italy, and so we are also growing in sales. The people like the PLA bottle because it is natural – not chemical”. And the customers are accepting a slightly higher price for the environmentally-friendly bottle. Instead of 0.50 € per 1.5 litre bottle, 0.55€ is accepted by the consumers. The water company is closely cooperating with Coop Italia, a retail chain with about 100 hypermarkets and more than 1000 supermarkets in Italy.

Sant’Anna continuously on the road to success.

But Fonti di Vinadio is also interested in geographic expansion. “When we look at other countries where the Sant’Anna value proposition would fit, of course we do that holistically” noted Cheri. “This means that we proactively assess all parts of the value chain, including understanding how new materials fit any existing post-consumer infrastructure, national or local policies, and compliance schemes. It must all be consistent with what we stand for as a Brand.” For the end-of-life Sant’Anna has performed recycling tests with Galactica, showing that PLA bottles can be recycled to PLA bottles. However, recycling is not really happening yet. Instead, the consumers are encouraged to dispose the PLA bottles in the biowaste bins. Their website says: “For further information, contact your local waste collection office.” And Luca confirms that the local authorities accept PLA bottles in the biowaste collection. While the labels of the bottles as well as the shrink films for 6-packs (at least for the 1.5 litre size) are also made of PLA, the caps have to be disposed of in the normal plastic waste. However, a biobased and compostable solution for the caps is being investigated. So, even if other PLA bottles – most of them in the 0.5 litre range or smaller – have disappeared from the market, Sant’Anna (by the way the only company worldwide offering a 1.5 litre PLA bottle), is seeing continuous success with further expansion plans. MT

In addition to the environmental advantages already mentioned, PLA offers some more (mainly energy related) benefits for bottle producers:





Granulate drying

6 hours ά 185 °C

6 hours ά 80 °C

60% less energy

Preform cooling water temperature



70% less energy

Preform heating oven

107- 110°C


30% less energy

Blowing process

11 bar (preblow) 32 bar final blow

6 bar (preblow) 23 bar (final blow)


Application of label (temperature of glue tank)




Shrink film tunnel




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Blow Moulding

Blow moulded air ducts made from bio-PA


he plastics used in the automotive industry are primarily based on petroleum. In its search for alternatives, Stuttgart/Germany based MAHLE GmbH tested various biobased plastics and ultimately validated one material as ready for series production. This new bioplastic is first being used for air duct products. Large quantities of various types of plastic are found in vehicles. Due to the limited availability and rising prices of petroleum-based plastics, it seems reasonable to investigate alternatives and develop them to readiness for series production. These alternatives should protect the environment and not represent an encroachment on the food chain, i.e., they should not be based on starch as a raw material, for example. Biobased plastics must also be available in sufficient quantity. As part of a predevelopment project, Mahle, in conjunction with DuPont Performance Polymers, has investigated a biobased blow mould material (presumably a Zytel RS polyamide) for pipes for unfiltered air as well as clean air, and validated it as ready for series production. Furthermore, a comparison with conventional petroleum-based blow mould plastics was performed. Regardless of the material selection, the requirements for air ducts, such as unfiltered and clean air guides, continue to rise. The trend toward a modular system approach demands more flexible and lightweight components that can be employed even under very tight installation space conditions. Another challenge consists in the low-cost, effective production of what are often very complex shapes. The increasingly difficult installation and removal conditions for service purposes are central aspects in the development of current air duct products.

In an effort to validate the properties of the new biobased blow mould material, first prototypes were initially produced without modifications to the sample and series production mould. In comparison with a conventional, petroleum-based material, the biobased plastic is convincing, with improved machinability and excellent flow properties. Better surface quality means less air turbulence within the air duct system. Extensive validation work in accordance with typical OEM specifications demonstrates better flexibility of the blow mould parts due to greater motility of folds. The greater component flexibility not only allows more freedom in shape design, but also provides advantages in the installation and removal of air duct products at the customer and in maintenance service. After simulated aging, the components were tested for rigidity, elongation at fracture, deflection, and pull-off forces. All recorded values are at least as good as the comparable values from the conventional material that was evaluated in parallel. Flawless functionality is thus established in prototypes. Another positive aspect is the achieved weight reduction, which can amount up to 25%, depending on the component size. MT

force [Mpa]

force [N]

motility of folds

Conventional plastic Bioplastic Conventional plastic after ageing Bioplastic after ageing 0 5 10 15 20 25 displacement [mm]

0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35


20 40 60 80 100 120 140 160


Conventional plastic 130 °C Bioplastic 130 °C Conventional plastic 150 °C Bioplastic 150 °C Conventional plastic160 °C Bioplastic 160 °C 0 200 400 600 800 1000 ageing [h] bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9



Stretch blow moulding First PLA bottles (2006-2007)


ince the market introduction of the Coca-Cola PET bottles in the early 1990s bottles made from polyethylene terephthalate (PET) have seen a tremendous market growth for beverages and other liquids such as detergents, edible oils etc. More recently biobased and biodegradable PLA was introduced for such applications, and biobased PEF (polyethylene furanoate) was declared to be the bottle material of the future. The preferred manufacturing process for all these materials is stretch blow moulding. Even if a number of different process variants are existing, this short introduction shall focus on the so called two-stage (or two-step) stretch blow moulding (or reheat stretch blow moulding).

In the first step or stage, so-called preforms are produced using the injection moulding process [1]. The preforms look like thick-walled test-tubes and already feature the final neck finish of the bottle including thread and neck ring. The preforms are cooled and usually packed in boxes for transport to the stretch blow moulding machine. Injection moulding systems are available today with usually 32, 48, 72, 96 and 144 cavities [2].

Info Videoclip (Source: KHS Corpoplast)

In the separate blow moulding machine the preforms are first reheated in a special UV oven to above glass transition temperature. Then each reheated preform is transferred into a blow mould where it is expanded with air pressure. In order to receive containers with excellent properties the heated preform is stretched to the bottom of the cavity prior to inflation by a long, thin so-called stretch rod. When the preform is at forming temperature it is fixed in the neck region by the neck ring, the stretch rod pushes against the bottom of the preform, while air is introduced to keep the soft plastic from sticking to the rod. When the stretch rod pins the preform (or parison) to the bottom of the mould, sufficient air is introduced to blow the preform against the mould wall, where it is held until cooled [3]. This process leads to a biaxially stretched wall of the container, giving it excellent mechanical and barrier properties. Most of the stretch blow moulding machines are rotary machines, i.e. a large number of mould cavities are mounted to a horizontal wheel. While this wheel is turning,


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reflector air cooler

radiator reflector

cold preforms

stretch blow mould

Injection moulding of performs. Note the preform neck-ring designed to hold the preform firmly in the blowing machine [2]

Principle of reheat stretch blow moulding [2]

the preheated preforms go into the moulds and finished bottles exit the moulds in a fast and continuous process. Machines with 4-32 moulds and an hourly output of 9,000 to 81,000 bottles are standard today [4]. Existing stretch blow moulding machines can be used to process PET, but also PLA and PEF. Only the process parameters are different, in the case of PLA in most cases even advantageous compared to PET (cf. table on page 24.

magnetic_148, 175.00 lpi 45.00° 15.00° 14.03.2009 75.00° 0.00° 14.03.2009 10:13:31 10:13:31 Prozess CyanProzess MagentaProzess GelbProzess Schwarz

c i t e n tics g s a a l P M for

[1] N.N.: Making preforms for PLA bottles; bioplastics MAGAZINE vol.1 (2006), Issue 02, pp 16. [2] Thielen, M.; Hartwig, K.; Gust, P.: Blasformen von Kunststoff Hohlkörpern, Hanser Publishers, Munich 2006 [3] Beal, G.; Throne, J.: Hollow Plastic Parts, Hanser Publishers, Munich 2004

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[4] N.N.: Innopet Blomax Serie IV, brochure of KHS Corpoplast, Hamburg, Germany, assessed online 21 July 2014

• Daily News from the Industrial Sector and the Plastics Markets



• Current Market Prices for Plastics.


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bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9


Application News

PLA Capsules for California Wine

Green Solutions for green People ”Those of us who enjoy the natural world and are active in the outdoors are becoming increasingly aware of the deteriorating condition of our planet. This concern is growing and there is a desire to show the, sometimes conservative outdoor industry, that it is quite easy to replace oil- based plastic products.” This is what Bjarne Högström, founder of GREENCOVER and the representative for FKuR in Scandinavia, states while sipping his coffee from the mug he has developed. With FKuR’s range of products nothing is impossible. Bjarne looked initially for a biodegradable product, and made the mug using Cellulose Acetate. However, the cost, stability and aesthetic touch were crucial in the choice of Terralene WF. The Greencover mug is made from a fully biobased raw material. Based on Braskems Green PE, which is derived from sugar cane, the Terralene WF grades are a unique range of compounds which have a higher modulus, dish washer resistance and food contact approval. In addition the material could be considered as being one of the greenest available as the renewable content exceeds 96 %. There are three grades of Terralene WF available; these contain an increasing amount of wood fibre. In this case Terralene WF 3516 has been used to produce the mug. With a modulus of approx. 1300 MPA it is more stable than mass-produced simple products but does not increase the cost significantly. Another clear benefit is that existing moulds can be used with this material. Leve AB in Stockholm produces the bowl, which is sold by Greencover AB. “We have had good field results. Schools and other similar organisations have used it for a long time and it’s a good way for teachers to start introducing the next of generation plastics to the next generation of students” finalizes Mr Högström.


bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9

In honor of Earth Day (April 22) and Arbor Day (April 26), Trinity Oaks (St. Helena, California, USA) announced in mid April that it has begun bottling its wines with new plantbased capsules made from EarthFirst® PLA film. Some of the key benefits, in addition to the biobased raw material, include less energy used and made in a greenhouse neutral facility utilizing solar, wind, and other energy offsets. The EarthFirst PLA film material used in the capsule is certified compostable, and the aluminum top disk on the bottle is recyclable. “This is just one of the ways that Trinity Oaks continues to support our role as stewards of the land. As an agriculturally-based company, we are dedicated to protecting the earth and its natural resources,” noted Bob Torkelson, President and COO, Trinchero Family Estates, the Napa Valley based wine company which produces Trinity Oaks wines. “Both Earth Day and Arbor Day celebrate the environment and encourage people to plant and care for trees, which we thought was a fitting time to commemorate our commitment.” The technology was developed in partnership with Plastic Suppliers, Inc. and Maverick Enterprises. Steve Otterbeck, President of Maverick Enterprises, added, “At this time, Trinity Oaks is the first and only wine capsule we have made with this PLA technology, which shows how committed they are to sustainable efforts.” “PLA is an extraordinary plant-based capsule that allows for us to create a unique, branded capsule for our customers while being very environmentally friendly using a renewable resource. We strive to be as sustainable as possible in all aspects of our daily production and each and every department here at Maverick. PLA is a new product we are happy to see Trinity Oaks using for their continued efforts in their commitment to sustainability.” Trinity Oaks Wines are produced by Trinchero Family Estates, and have helped plant over 10 million trees through the One Bottle One Tree® program. Trinity Oaks wines’ One Bottle One Tree program funds the planting of a tree for every bottle of Trinity Oaks wine sold in partnership with the non-profit organization Trees for the Future to help restore tree cover and plant trees in areas most in need of reforestation. MT


Biobased PE for carton packaging


ne successful example that reflects the commitment to sustainability of Brazilian manufacturers is the partnership between Braskem and Tetra Pak® for using the biobased polyethylene (green PE) in its carton packaging manufactured in Brazil. Since 2011, Tetra Pak has used the biobased polymer in its screw caps. The initiative has led Tetra Pak to become the world’s first supplier of carton packaging for liquid food to use the sugar cane based PE, branded as I’m green™.

In 2013, both companies announced an expansion in the supply agreement for the renewable resin to include its use in the protective layers of all carton packaging made in Brazil. The substitution, which will be made this year, means that some 13 billion packaging units will be manufactured with up to 82% of the materials used derived from renewable resources. To the company, the use of natural resources aims to preserve the future in view of the global challenge posed by the growing scarcity of fossil-based raw materials. In February Coca-Cola Brazil became the first company to use the new packages for its Del Valle juice beverages, previously sold in regular cartons. Following that success, the pilot is now being extended to include all 150 customers that source from Tetra Pak Brazil.

The transformation, which is considered a milestone in the food and beverage packaging industry, is also valued for raising environmental awareness among consumers. “Working jointly with Tetra Pak, we meet the needs of both the packaging industry and consumers, who are ever more connected and aware of these issues,” said Alexandre Elias, director of Renewable Chemicals at Braskem. “We are particularly proud to be the first in the industry to use bio-based LDPE in carton packages”, said Charles Brand, Vice President Marketing & Product Management at Tetra Pak. “We believe that the best way to protect the sustainable future of the packaging industry and meet the global challenge of a growing scarcity of fossil-fuel based raw materials is to further increase the use of renewable resources. We have set an ambition to develop a 100% renewable package, building from an average of 70% today. This launch is an important step in that direction.” I’m green™ polyethylene has the same characteristics as traditional polyethylene, such as being inert, resistant and recyclable, with the added advantage of being made from renewable materials, which helps reduce the level of greenhouse gases by absorbing CO2 from the air during the sugarcane’s growth phase. MT

Inside package

Outside package

Polyethylene Polyethylene Aluminium Bio-based polyethylene Paperboard Bio-based polyethylene

bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9



Material use first! Proposals for a Reform of the Renewable Energy Directive (RED) to a Renewable Energy and Materials Directive (REMD)


he Renewable Energy Directive (RED) of the European Union supports the energy use (bio-fuels, wood-pellets etc) of biomass. But according to the authors, the incentive scheme should also integrate biobased materials and chemicals. nova-paper #4, which can be downloaded in full free of charge is titled: “Proposals for a Reform of the Renewable Energy Directive to a Renewable Energy and Materials Directive (REMD)”. It aims at creating a level playing field for biobased chemicals and materials with bioenergy and biofuels in Europe. It is fundamentally different from other reforms of the Directive being currently discussed because it opens the perspective to not only look at energy, but also at biobased materials. The proposal is based on the insights that the support system for bioenergy and biofuels created by the RED and the corresponding national legislations is one of the main reasons hindering the biobased material sector from developing – and therefore the whole biobased economy. It is time to understand that the RED stems from a time when biomass was available in abundance and it made sense to create the framework, but that today biomass is a highly valuable raw material that should be allocated in the most efficient way possible. At the moment, the legislation causes serious market distortions for biobased feedstocks that have been reported by a multitude of companies. Unfavourable framework conditions combined with high biomass prices and uncertain biomass supplies deter investors from putting money into biobased chemistry and materials1.

Furthermore, several problems with the current framework have been become apparent over the last few years, as for example the fact that some Member States are not on track with meeting their quotas or that feedstock bottlenecks have appeared due to the increased and unbalanced demand for biomass. This reform proposal aims to offer solutions to all these issues, while improving the generation of value added, employment, innovation and investment in Europe. All of these criteria can be better fulfilled by industrial material use than by energy use (of the same amount of biomass). The strengthening of the biobased material sector will contribute to the desired industrial renaissance recently communicated by the European Commission, while still reducing greenhouse gas emissions and contributing to a strong climate policy of the EU. Furthermore, it aims at lessening the dependence on public subsidies while still using, preserving and expanding the existing structures in place for bioenergy and biofuels. The revolutionary proposal calls for an opening of the support system to also make biobased chemicals and materials accountable for the renewables quota of each Member State. The basic idea is to transform the RED into a REMD – a “Renewable Energy and Materials Directive”. It does not intend to establish a new quota for the chemical industry. Instead, it proposes that the material use of a biobased building block such as bioethanol or biomethane should be accounted for in the renewables quota the same way as it counts for the energy use of the same building block, e.g. fuel. Fig 1: The competition triangle: Petrochemicals – Bioenergy/ biofuels – Material use of biomass (Carus et al. 2014)

The competition triangle: No level playing field for bio-based chemicals and products

Petrochemical Industry

90 % Energy Tax

Fuels, Electricity and Heat

Artificial competitiveness

Bioenergy Biofuels

Energy Shift (with Solar and Wind)

10 %

Comprehensive support system at EU and national levels

ft hi ion l S ut ia ol er ev at R M al w str Ra du In 3.

No Energy Tax, no import duties

Easy, subsidised access to biomass 48 %


Integration into Emissions Trading System

National Implementations , Biofuel Quota Act, Tax reductions

Biomass Renewable Energy Directive (RED)

52 % (D 2008) Low competitiveness to petrochemical productes

Uncertainty on sustainable feedstock supply, R&D, biotech processes, performance, competitiveness, markets and political framework are the main hurdles for investment in Europe.


bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9

Difficult access to domestic biomass, barriers in trading, import taxes

Industrial Material Use of Biomass

Complete lack of a support system for the material use – support only for R&D, sporadic and limited to certain applications. Difficult situation on the market, with laws and regulations as well as in politics and publics.

Advantages and benefits for Bioenergy/Biofuels leading to hurdles for other sectors Hurdles and barriers for Industrial Material Use

Politics The factors state how much more gross employment and added value is created per unit of land (or tonne of biomass) by material use than energy use So 10


p ow

e re

d ele

c tric ca

Inverter (DV AC) 5%, Grid losses: 6% Reaching the battery:

Photovoltaic Solar Electricity

3,215 GJ per ha and year




motor to the wheel: 0% 6.3% of original energy

2,250 GJ per ha and year

3,600 GJ per ha and year




G 50



7 6

In Central Europe, the average solar radiation per hectare about 36,000 Gigajoule (GJ) per ha and year

5 4

The photovoltaic panel and electric car system is 50 times (BTL) to 125 times compared to the system of energy crops for a biofuel driven car.

to the wheel


1 1






7 Seven Studies

Notes: Shares of food an feed based on FAOSTAT; gap of animal feed Fig 2: Comparison of gross macroeconomic effects demand from grazing not includedof (seematerial Krausmann et al. 2008) and energy use of biomass (Carus et al. 2014)

Other building blocks, such as succinic acid, lactic acid, etc. could be accounted for based on a conversion into bio-ethanol equivalents according to their calorific value. Reduction of greenhouse gas emissions could also be the basis for such a conversion. Six more evolutionary proposals complement this comprehensive idea of a REMD. They focus especially on resource efficiency by restricting bioenergy’s share of the RED quotas, strengthening solar and wind power within the European renewables framework and by including more CO2-based fuels in the quota. It is proposed to abolish multiple counting within the quota, except for raw materials stemming from cascading or recycling processes. Furthermore, in the future representatives of the material sector should also be heard for any reform concerning energy won from biomass. Finally, the reform paper addresses the current debate about sustainability certifications for biomass used for any purpose. It points out that sustainability certifications for the energy sector were only implemented hand in hand with considerable incentives. This aspect is often forgotten in the discussion. The paper proposes installing the same sustainability criteria for biomass used for materials that are required for the use of energy, if the same incentives are applied. In such a context, an expansion of today’s sustainability schemes to cover more criteria would be welcome. The paper is completed by two Annexes: One includes statements of companies that feel the negative impacts of the distorted market for biomass caused by the RED; and the other presents comprehensive background information on all statements of the main paper as well as the specifics of industrial material use. MT

Info: The complete paper (pdf) can be downloaded free of charge at

By: Michael Carus, Lara Dammer, Roland Essel all: nova-Institut, Hürth, Germany Andreas Hermann Öko-Institut; Freiburg, Germany

1:“Whereas world capacity for biobased chemicals and materials is rapidly growing, Europe clearly lags behind. Lux Research, a Boston based company, expects a doubling of global biobased capacity in 2017 to 13.2 Mton. But Europe’s share will drop from 37% in 2005 to 14% in 2017.” (

about 2% of 20,000 GJ (radiation share in growing period) per ha:


400 GJ per ha and year





Photosynthesis Distribution and combustion engine Mechanical & chemical processing Biofuels 50 - 135 GJ per ha and year


e l, B i

(fuel wheel): 5% 0.1-0.2% of original energy


Direct gross added value factor

Direct gross employment factor




18 - 47 GJ per ha and year

o e t h a n o l , BT L )

Editor’s note Michael Thielen

Two of many interesting aspects mentioned in the proposal are (i) macroeconomic effects (gross employment and added value) and (ii) energy efficiency of photovoltaic vs. biofuels. (i) In 2012, Fifo-Institute, Cologne (Germany) and nova-Institute, Hürth (Germany) conducted a comprehensive meta-analysis of seven major studies on the economics of material use of biomass. This meta-analytical study of the macroeconomic effects focuses on the question: “How do we assess the economics of material use compared to energy use?” applying the same parameters of added value and the effects on employment. Fig 2 shows the recapitulation of the results. Overall, it is apparent that material use promises several advantages over energy use in terms of gross employment (Factors 5-10) and gross added value (Factors 4–9) – in both cases related to the same area of land or amount of biomass. This is largely due to the considerably longer process and value chains for material use – and the higher value of the products. (ii) Fig 3. shows the different grades of land efficiency for different biofuel systems (biodiesel from rapeseed, bioethanol from wheat or corn and BTL from lignocellulosic feedstock) compared to the land efficiency of powering an electric car with solar energy – from the field to the wheel. All assumptions are conservative and widely accepted by experts. The different biofuel systems need 50 to 125 times more land than a solar electric car system, taking only the direct effects into account (without the production of the PV system and without energy input (tractor, fertilizer, plant protection…) in the agricultural system). Especially if land is rare, the decision for a land-efficient solar electric mobility instead of far less efficient biofuels will free large arable areas for the agricultural production

bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9




iobased plastics are usually more expensive than their conventional counterparts, and companies face supply chain challenges when they switch from one raw material solution to another. Nevertheless, the biobased plastics market continues to grow. GreenPremium plays an important part in this. In its paper “GreenPremium along the value chain of biobased products” nova-Institute (Hürth, Germany) is, for the first time, putting forward a clear definition of GreenPremium:

GreenPremium: Who is willing to pay more? An introduction to nova paper #3 on bio-based economy 2014-05

The GreenPremium is basically understood as the extra-price market actors are willing to pay for a product just for the fact that it is green or, in our specific case, biobased. In other words: an extra charge for the additional emotional performance and/or strategic performance of the intermediate or end product the buyer expects to get when choosing the biobased alternative compared to the price for the conventional counterpart with the same technical performance. The results of the surveys and analyses of 35 cases of biobased chemicals and plastics clearly demonstrate that GreenPremium prices do indeed exist and are paid in the value chains of different biobased chemicals and plastics – especially for new biobased value-added chains and on the European market. In line with the definition of GreenPremium, the motivation for paying additional prices is the biobased product’s expected increased emotional and strategic performance. In the absence of any policy incentives, GreenPremium prices are very important for the market introduction of biobased products, and many new biobased plastics would not even exist if there were no customers willing to pay GreenPremium prices. The range of reported GreenPremium prices in the various branches and applications analyzed ranges from a 10% to a 300% premium over the conventional petrochemical product with the same technical performance. Most of the GreenPremium prices found lie within a range of 10-20% for biobased intermediates, polymers and compounds, followed by the 20-40% range. Higher GreenPremium prices could only be obtained in specific cases. For the end consumer the range of GreenPremium prices for biobased products goes from 0% (automotive, cosmetics, bottle) to 25% (wall plug, toy) with, in the middle, a 10% GreenPremium for organic food with biobased packaging. Experiences show that consumers tend to pay GreenPremium prices (and hence pass on the difference to other actors in the supply chain) when the environmental or social benefits are explained to them (Levine 2012*). “The consumers are the driving force. Some consumers already pay a premium for less polluting cars, for organic food and for green plastics, and they are constantly growing in number. ‘Being green’ is the premium, and the consumer shall pay for it. Local regulation can be helpful, but it is definitely the demand that makes the difference. And the current trend is going green, worldwide.” (Prestileo 2012*).


bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9

GreenPremium in percentage of the product price


Chemical company

Polymer producer


Product producer

Regional differences The data within the study is largely based on estimations of the European market. It should also be mentioned that the willingness to pay GreenPremium price is relatively high in Europe, whereas in China it is relatively low and North America somewhere in between (Ravenstijn 2012*). An evaluation of the US market conducted by P&G largely confirms this trend. “Roughly 80% of consumers are either highly engaged with environmental sustainability (they will accept some performance trade-offs for products with better environmental footprints), or are ‘eco-aware’ but will not accept trade-offs. The latter group (70%) are considered the mainstream and are an important target group for biobased products. The remaining 20% are indifferent; in the US, half of this 20% self-classify as never greens (Meller 2009*). Similar results have been revealed by the National Retail Federation, showing that 70% would be willing to pay a premium of at least 5% (NRF 2010*). Other analyses confirm more generally that “consumers are willing to pay slightly more, but not huge amounts more” (Cooper 2013*).

GreenPremium changes along the supply chain Fig. 1 shows the results of all expert interviews and surveys undertaken and analyzed in the context of this study. nova-Institute’s surveys and analyses cover cases of GreenPremium prices for 35 bio-based chemicals, polymers and plastics (drop-in and new biopolymers), and compounds – and additional background information from market insiders for the GreenPremium prices. Expert interviews by phone, skype, LinkedIn and face to face, as well as a literature analyses, were conducted in late 2012 and 2013. The figure shows the identified GreenPremium levels depending on where they are paid in the value chain – for example, the polymer producer buys a building block from the chemical company and might pay a GreenPremium for it or the end consumer buys the final product and might pay a GreenPremium to the distributor.


End consumer

Fig. 1: Analysis of GreenPremium prices along the value chain of different bio-based chemicals, plastics and end products. Coloured lines represent one value chain, single dots represent single findings.

Value chain

Some identified GreenPremium prices are part of the same value chain; they are shown by coloured lines. The empirical data shows that for all lines the GreenPremium price levels (in percentage terms) decreases along the supply chain towards the end consumer, as well as the █brown and █green lines after an intermediate peak. Relatively high GreenPremiums are paid for (early) intermediate products, whereas the end consumer pays a much lower GreenPremium or even no extra price at all. The reason for this is that intermediate products like building-blocks, polymers or compounds only account for a minor fraction of overall product costs, with the effect that endproduct costs increase only slightly. The material costs share (including the GreenPremium) of the total product price decreases along the value chain. The highest GreenPremium price (in percentage) is paid predominately for the intermediates. And without this enhanced and confirmed willingness to pay high GreenPremium prices for intermediate products, many new bio-based value-chains would not have been implemented at all. The green line rises towards the middle of the supply chain, which means that the highest GreenPremium levels are paid by the distributor for the green packaging. This situation can occur when a product is subject to very high emotional performance that would allow producers and distributors to pass on their extra costs to the end consumer. Biobased packaging for organic food can serve as an example, with a small fraction of packaging costs and high emotional performance through green packaging making a perfect fit with the consequent green image of the organic food product. The distributor can pass his extra costs of the green packaging (+100%) on to the end consumer, who only has to pay 10% GreenPremium for the final organic food product. (The high GreenPremium price for the green packaging can be explained by a small production volume.)

bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9


Market The unconnected dots represent other empirically proven GreenPremium levels in the market, which could not be allocated to specific supply chains. The distribution indicates above-average GreenPremium levels for compounds and polymers compared to chemicals or end products. Some of the dots represent specific materials and are coloured (e.g. PLA in blue), others represent more general findings and are marked in grey (e.g. bio-based chemicals in general).

Some examples Some companies pay more than double the conventional price, for example for compounds based on PE made from biomass. One reason for FKuR customers to pay this premium is that the product fits their corporate identity, since they pursue sustainability targets and pay attention to their products’ carbon footprint (Michels 2012*). The fischer company brought a green wall plug made from 57% bio-based polyamide to market in order to strengthen their green company image. The biobased version, which is 20% more expensive than the conventional one, is mainly aimed at environmentally minded do-it-yourselfers (Schätzle 2013*). Talking about the end-consumer industry, Coca-Cola is willing to pay up to 25% extra for bio-based PET to be used in drinking bottles. This includes higher production costs caused by retooling and transport (Stadler 2012*). Based on increasing economies of scale, Coca-Cola expects equal prices to petro-based PET by 2015 for the Brazilian production chain, whereas the European way will require further GreenPremium shares due to higher logistics

costs (Stadler 2012*). Generally, it is estimated that major companies like Coca-Cola and Danone pay 15-20% and even up to 25% more for Bio-PET or PLA used in packaging. A producer of plastic toys pays a GreenPremium of nearly 100% for a 68% bio-based version that has similar technical properties to ABS in order to take advantage of marketing effects. The final toy product prices are 20-30% higher than competing products (Grashorn 2012*). Within the automotive sector, Toyota has covered 80% of the interior surfaces of one of its hybrid cars with Bio-PETbased plastic. The material, which is used in the seat trim, floor carpets and other interior surfaces, is estimated to raise raw material costs by 15% (Toyota 2011, Ravenstijn 2012*). One reason for this development is to meet internal sustainability targets, e.g. concerning the product’s carbon footprint (Carrez 2013*). Ford, Toyota and Volkswagen are also interested in purchasing bio-PP from Braskem in order to benefit from marketing and supply chain effects. They are expected to pay around 30% extra compared to the current petro-based counterpart, at least for a limited period of time (Ravenstijn 2012*). MT

Info: The complete paper (pdf) including a complete *list of all references is available free of charge at

COMPOSITES EUROPE 7.– 9. Okt. 2014 | Messe Düsseldorf 9. Europäische Fachmesse & Forum für Verbundwerkstoffe, Technologie und Anwendungen

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bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9

Polylactic Acid Uhde Inventa-Fischer has expanded its product portfolio to include the innovative stateof-the-art PLAneo ® process. The feedstock for our PLA process is lactic acid, which can be produced from local agricultural products containing starch or sugar. The application range of PLA is similar to that of polymers based on fossil resources as its physical properties can be tailored to meet packaging, textile and other requirements. Think. Invest. Earn.

Uhde Inventa-Fischer GmbH Holzhauser Strasse 157–159 13509 Berlin Germany Tel. +49 30 43 567 5 Fax +49 30 43 567 699 Uhde Inventa-Fischer AG Via Innovativa 31 7013 Domat/Ems Switzerland Tel. +41 81 632 63 11 Fax +41 81 632 74 03

Uhde Inventa-Fischer


Generation Zero Bioplastics were the very beginning!


ue to the strong and growing use of plastics, some historians call the current time the plastics age. In 1983, with 125,000,000 m³ for the first time the global demand for plastics exceeded that of iron. But, the history of plastics is older than some historians and some people in the plastics business might expect:

Pic. 1: Bonboniere cover (Celluloid as eplacement for tortoiseshell)

Modern man always looked for, and made use of, easily processable materials to ease daily life. In the history of plastics, according to Waentig, it can be distinguished between the following phases: ƒƒ Origins (until1839), ƒƒ era of imitating materials (1839 to 1914), ƒƒ era of substitutes (from approx. 1914 to approx. 1950), ƒƒ era of materials with novel properties (from approx. 1950). Some might have forgotten that the very first plastics were based on biopolymers. Already in the stone age, natural resins (biopolymers) were used as glue and in the middle ages manufactured products from the biopolymer milk protein (casein) were used for imitation of horn for inlays or little medallions. A recipe for making imitation horn is almost 500 years old, making it the oldest known text on creating a plastic. In around 1530 the Swiss merchant Bartholomaeus Schobinger met with the Bavarian Benedictine monk Wolfgang Seidel at the wealthy Fugger family´s residence. There, Seidel, a passionate collector and publisher of scientific texts, heard about an alchemist´s recipe that he later published in his writings under the title “The secret to creating a transparent material akin to beautiful horn” (see box next page).

Pic. 2: Candle holder (casein as replacement for tortoiseshell)

Social structures changed rapidly in the 18th century. Urbanization took place, the bourgeoisie became wider and wealthier and required a higher level of scarce and expensive horn, nacre, tortoise shell and ivory for designed fashionable articles for daily use (see pictures). The demand for these natural materials – which, by the way, are all based on biopolymers – exceeded supply and opened the market for substitutes.

Bois Durci, the hardened wood, was used mainly in France between 1855 and 1927 for the production of picture frames, write garnish, album covers, badges and other luxurious objects (picture 9). Bois Durci is a dark material, made from the biopolymer protein and many different filling materials. This moulding compound consisted of waste products: bovine blood from the many slaughterhouses around Paris, the megacity at that time, as well as sawdust from tropical wood from furniture production. At about the same time, at the end of the 19th century, Milk Stone a resin based on casein was invented. Famous trademarks were Galalith and Erinoid (see box p. 38, top). It needed some effort to be produced and was more expensive than the later Celluloid, but it kept a certain market for a while because it was odorless and flammable. Pic. 3: Buttons (casein as replacement for nacre)


bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9


In the second half of the 19th century the game of billiards became very popular in the USA and the demand for ivory for billiard balls threatened Ceylonese (today Sri Lanka) elephants with extinction. In 1869, thermoplastic celluloid was developed by J.W. Hyatt as a replacement material for the scarce and expensive ivory. At that time he certainly was not aware that he had introduced the first ever synthetically produced bioplastic. Celluloid is composed of a mixture of about 70 to 75 % by weight of cellulose di-nitrate and 25 to 30 % by weight of camphor. Over the years it has been displaced by mixtures of cellulose acetate (see extra frame) which are less combustible. Today, many other biopolymers and bioplastics are on the market, but there is still room for some bioplastics which started from the very beginning: Cellulose Acetate (CA) is marketed e.g as Biograde® from FKuR, one of the most well-known applications of cellulose aceto butyrate (CAB) is the moulded handle on the Swiss army knife. A rather young, new casein-based polymer is marketed by Qmilk (cf. bM 05/2013).

Pic. 4: Clasp (celluloid as replacement for nacre)

Univ.-Prof. Dr.-Ing. Christian Bonten is member of the Presidium of the Deutsches Kunststoffmuseum (German Plastics Museum) in Düsseldorf, Germany and Director of the Institut für Kunststofftechnik (IKT) in Stuttgart/Germany.

“The secret to creating a transparent material that feels and looks like beautiful horn”

Pic. 5: Cigarette holder (casein as replacement for horn)

(Original text in German, “ein durchsichtige materi (...) gleich wie schons horn”) “Take goat´s cheese or another low-fat cheese and leave it to simmer for a whole day. Then let it cool until a thick pastelike deposit forms. The white milky liquid floating above must be skimmed off. Pour fresh hot water over what remains, leave it to simmer again and stir so that the water separates from the paste. Repeat the process until the white substance no longer forms. What remains at the bottom of the pot is a substance that is viscous and transparent like horn and looks like curd cheese.” Father Seidel then picks up the thread: “Place the cleaned material in a well heated soapy solution and then press it into a mould. The filled mould has to be plunged into cold water, where it becomes as hard as bone and beautifully transparent.” And there you have “the ideal material for craftsmen.” Father Seidel adds: “If the process has been performed correctly, table tops, dinnerware and medallions can be cast from the material”. He continues: “But remember, the material must be moulded while still hot. Even when already moulded, it can still be shaped without being damaged. As soon as it has cooled down, however, bending or twisting will cause it to shatter like glass.”

Pic. 6: Belt buckle and buttons (Celluloid as replacement for horn)

bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9


Report Biopolymers and bioplastics from milk proteins Raw material for the necessary casein is cow’s milk, which has a casein content of 2 to 3 % per weight. One litre of cow’s milk contains about 40 g of butterfat, 36 g of casein and 50 g of lactose. So up to 30 litres of milk are necessary for producing 1 kg of casein, which is a quite inefficient ratio. Pic. 7: Toiletry articles (Metal, glass and Celluloid as replacement for ivory)

Pic. 8: Billiard balls (Celluloid as replacement for ivory)

A kind of an artificial horn, marketed with the brand names Galalith or Erinoid, was made from dried casein in a quite lengthy and costly manner. The production of hard artificial horn required milk properly degreased by centrifuging and precipitated with rennet instead of acid. For hardening, the plates and rods needed to be brought into a 5 % aqueous bath of formaldehyde. The hardening took weeks and months, which made the process so expensive. Later, the hardening was cut by two thirds and later down to 20 % by means of potassium thiocyanate.

Biopolymers und bioplastics from cellulose (cell walls from plants) In the 19th century, cellulose became an important raw material for plastics. Since the bronze age, cellulose from papyrus, wood and cotton was used as paper, as well as in the form of fibres and textiles. Cellulose can be found as a structural component in all plants – including many plants that are not useful as food. Hence cellulose is the most frequently encountered carbohydrate on earth. Vegetable fibres such as cotton, jute, flax and hemp are cellulose in a nearly pure form. By means of drawing into fibres and forming, it is possible to convert cellulose into paper (pulp). The cellulose used here is obtained from wood or straw. By hydrolysis of cellulose, glucose is obtained, which can then be converted into different chemicals such as acetone, alkanols, carboxylic acids, and also ethanol, by means of fermentation. This bioethanol can deliver ethylene and butadiene for the production of bioplastics. However, the method involves many different steps and is not always efficient.

Pic. 9: Picture Frame (Bois Durci as replacement for e.g. Ebony) All pictures by courtesy of Deutsches Kunststoffmuseum, Düsseldorf, Germany. By Christian Bonten Deutsches Kunststoffmuseum Düsseldorf, Germany


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A simpler method is to produce derivatives from cellulose which can be converted more directly into bioplastics. The esterification to a cellulose ester with the aid of derivatives of organic acids (e. g. acid anhydride) represents a typical method. The characteristics of these cellulose esters can be strongly influenced by additives, e.g. plasticizers. The common cellulose esters CA (cellulose actetate), CAB (cellulose acetate butyrate) and CP (cellulose propionate) can be converted using all known plastics converting processes.

Basics Bioplastics (as defined by European Bioplastics e.V.) is a term used to define two different kinds of plastics: a. Plastics based on → renewable resources (the focus is the origin of the raw material used). These can be biodegradable or not. b. → Biodegradable and → compostable plastics according to EN13432 or similar standards (the focus is the compostability of the final product; biodegradable and compostable plastics can be based on renewable (biobased) and/or non-renewable (fossil) resources).

Glossary 3.2

In bioplastics MAGAZINE again and again the same expressions appear that some of our readers might not (yet) be familiar with. This glossary shall help with these terms and shall help avoid repeated explanations such as ‘PLA (Polylactide)‘ in various articles. Since this Glossary will not be printed in each issue you can download a pdf version from our website (

Bioplastics may be - based on renewable resources and biodegradable; - based on renewable resources but not be biodegradable; and - based on fossil resources and biodegradable. Aerobic - anaerobic | aerobic = in the presence of oxygen (e.g. in composting) | anaerobic = without oxygen being present (e.g. in biogasification, anaerobic digestion) [bM 06/09]

Anaerobic digestion | conversion of organic waste into bio-gas. Other than in → composting in anaerobic degradation there is no oxygen present. In bio-gas plants for example, this type of degradation leads to the production of methane that can be captured in a controlled way and used for energy generation. [14] [bM 06/09] Amorphous | non-crystalline, glassy with unordered lattice Amylopectin | Polymeric branched starch molecule with very high molecular weight (biopolymer, monomer is → Glucose) [bM 05/09] Amylose | Polymeric non-branched starch molecule with high molecular weight (biopolymer, monomer is → Glucose) [bM 05/09] Biobased plastic/polymer | A plastic/polymer in which constitutional units are totally or in part from → biomass [3]. If this claim is used, a percentage should always be given to which extent the product/material is → biobased [1] [bM 01/07, bM 03/10]

Biobased | The term biobased describes the part of a material or product that is stemming from → biomass. When making a biobasedclaim, the unit (→ biobased carbon content, → biobased mass content), a percentage and the measuring method should be clearly stated [1] Biobased carbon | carbon contained in or stemming from → biomass. A material or product made of fossil and → renewable resources contains fossil and → biobased carbon. The 14C method [4, 5] measures the amount of biobased carbon in the material or product as fraction weight (mass) or percent weight (mass) of the total organic carbon content [1] [6] Biobased mass content | describes the amount of biobased mass contained in a material or product. This method is complementary to the 14C method, and furthermore, takes other chemical elements besides the biobased carbon into account, such as oxygen, nitrogen and hydrogen. A measuring method is currently being developed and tested by the Association Chimie du Végétal (ACDV) [1]

last update issue 02/2013

bioplastics MAGAZINE is grateful to European Bioplastics for the permission to use parts of their Glossary (see [1]) Readers who would like to suggest better or other explanations to be added to the list, please contact the editor. [*: bM ... refers to more comprehensive article previously published in bioplastics MAGAZINE)

Biodegradable Plastics | Biodegradable Plastics are plastics that are completely assimilated by the → microorganisms present a defined environment as food for their energy. The carbon of the plastic must completely be converted into CO2 during the microbial process. The process of biodegradation depends on the environmental conditions, which influence it (e.g. location, temperature, humidity) and on the material or application itself. Consequently, the process and its outcome can vary considerably. Biodegradability is linked to the structure of the polymer chain; it does not depend on the origin of the raw materials. There is currently no single, overarching standard to back up claims about biodegradability. One standard for example is ISO or in Europe: EN 14995 Plastics- Evaluation of compostability - Test scheme and specifications [bM 02/06, bM 01/07]

Biomass | Material of biological origin excluding material embedded in geological formations and material transformed to fossilised material. This includes organic material, e.g. trees, crops, grasses, tree litter, algae and waste of biological origin, e.g. manure [1, 2] Biorefinery | the co-production of a spectrum of bio-based products (food, feed, materials, chemicals including monomers or building blocks for bioplastics) and energy (fuels, power, heat) from biomass.[bM 02/13] Blend | Mixture of plastics, polymer alloy of at least two microscopically dispersed and molecularly distributed base polymers Bisphenol-A (BPA) | Monomer used to produce different polymers. BPA is said to cause health problems, due to the fact that is behaves like a hormone. Therefore it is banned for use in children’s products in many countries. BPI | Biodegradable Products Institute, a notfor-profit association. Through their innovative compostable label program, BPI educates manufacturers, legislators and consumers about the importance of scientifically based standards for compostable materials which biodegrade in large composting facilities.

Carbon footprint | (CFPs resp. PCFs – Product Carbon Footprint): Sum of → greenhouse gas emissions and removals in a product system, expressed as CO2 equivalent, and based on a → life cycle assessment. The CO2 equivalent of a specific amount of a greenhouse gas is calculated as the mass of a given greenhouse gas multiplied by its → global warmingpotential [1, 2] Carbon neutral, CO2 neutral | Carbon neutral describes a product or process that has a negligible impact on total atmospheric CO2 levels. For example, carbon neutrality means that any CO2 released when a plant decomposes or is burnt is offset by an equal amount of CO2 absorbed by the plant through photosynthesis when it is growing. Carbon neutrality can also be achieved through buying sufficient carbon credits to make up the difference. The latter option is not allowed when communicating → LCAs or carbon footprints regarding a material or product [1, 2]. Carbon-neutral claims are tricky as products will not in most cases reach carbon neutrality if their complete life cycle is taken into consideration (including the end-of life). If an assessment of a material, however, is conducted (cradle to gate), carbon neutrality might be a valid claim in a B2B context. In this case, the unit assessed in the complete life cycle has to be clarified [1] Catalyst | substance that enables and accelerates a chemical reaction Cellophane | Clear film on the basis of → cellulose [bM 01/10] Cellulose | Cellulose is the principal component of cell walls in all higher forms of plant life, at varying percentages. It is therefore the most common organic compound and also the most common polysaccharide (multisugar) [11]. C. is a polymeric molecule with very high molecular weight (monomer is → Glucose), industrial production from wood or cotton, to manufacture paper, plastics and fibres [bM 01/10] Cellulose ester| Cellulose esters occur by the esterification of cellulose with organic acids. The most important cellulose esters from a technical point of view are cellulose acetate

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Basics (CA with acetic acid), cellulose propionate (CP with propionic acid) and cellulose butyrate (CB with butanoic acid). Mixed polymerisates, such as cellulose acetate propionate (CAP) can also be formed. One of the most well-known applications of cellulose aceto butyrate (CAB) is the moulded handle on the Swiss army knife [11]

(from e.g. sugar cane, a development to make terephthalic acid from renewable resources are under way). Other examples are polyamides (partly biobased e.g. PA 4.10 or PA 10.10 or fully biobased like PA 5.10 or 10.10)

Cellulose acetate CA| → Cellulose ester

EN 13432 | European standard for the assessment of the → compostability of plastic packaging products

CEN | Comité Européen de Normalisation (European organisation for standardization) Compost | A soil conditioning material of decomposing organic matter which provides nutrients and enhances soil structure. [bM 06/08, 02/09]

Compostable Plastics | Plastics that are → biodegradable under ‘composting’ conditions: specified humidity, temperature, → microorganisms and timefame. In order to make accurate and specific claims about compostability, the location (home, → industrial) and timeframe need to be specified [1]. Several national and international standards exist for clearer definitions, for example EN 14995 Plastics - Evaluation of compostability Test scheme and specifications. [bM 02/06, bM 01/07] Composting | A solid waste management technique that uses natural process to convert organic materials to CO2, water and humus through the action of → microorganisms. When talking about composting of bioplastics, usually → industrial composting in a managed composting plant is meant [bM 03/07] Compound | plastic mixture from different raw materials (polymer and additives) [bM 04/10) Copolymer | Plastic composed of different monomers. Cradle-to-Gate | Describes the system boundaries of an environmental →Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) which covers all activities from the ‘cradle’ (i.e., the extraction of raw materials, agricultural activities and forestry) up to the factory gate Cradle-to-Cradle | (sometimes abbreviated as C2C): Is an expression which communicates the concept of a closed-cycle economy, in which waste is used as raw material (‘waste equals food’). Cradle-to-Cradle is not a term that is typically used in →LCA studies. Cradle-to-Grave | Describes the system boundaries of a full →Life Cycle Assessment from manufacture (‘cradle’) to use phase and disposal phase (‘grave’). Crystalline | Plastic with regularly arranged molecules in a lattice structure Density | Quotient from mass and volume of a material, also referred to as specific weight DIN | Deutsches Institut für Normung (German organisation for standardization) DIN-CERTCO | independant certifying organisation for the assessment on the conformity of bioplastics Dispersing | fine distribution of non-miscible liquids into a homogeneous, stable mixture Drop-In Bioplastics | chemically indentical to conventional petroleum based plastics, but made from renewable resources. Examples are bio-PE made from bio-ethanol (from e.g. sugar cane) or partly biobased PET (the monoethylene glykol made from bio-ethanol


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Elastomers | rigid, but under force flexible and elastically formable plastics with rubbery properties

Energy recovery | recovery and exploitation of the energy potential in (plastic) waste for the production of electricity or heat in waste incineration pants (waste-to-energy) Enzymes | proteins that catalyze chemical reactions Ethylen | colour- and odourless gas, made e.g. from, Naphtha (petroleum) by cracking, monomer of the polymer polyethylene (PE) European Bioplastics e.V. | The industry association representing the interests of Europe’s thriving bioplastics’ industry. Founded in Germany in 1993 as IBAW, European Bioplastics today represents the interests of over 70 member companies throughout the European Union. With members from the agricultural feedstock, chemical and plastics industries, as well as industrial users and recycling companies, European Bioplastics serves as both a contact platform and catalyst for advancing the aims of the growing bioplastics industry. Extrusion | process used to create plastic profiles (or sheet) of a fixed cross-section consisting of mixing, melting, homogenising and shaping of the plastic. Fermentation | Biochemical reactions controlled by → microorganisms or → enyzmes (e.g. the transformation of sugar into lactic acid). FSC | Forest Stewardship Council. FSC is an independent, non-governmental, not-forprofit organization established to promote the responsible and sustainable management of the world’s forests. Gelatine | Translucent brittle solid substance, colorless or slightly yellow, nearly tasteless and odorless, extracted from the collagen inside animals‘ connective tissue. Genetically modified organism (GMO) | Organisms, such as plants and animals, whose genetic material (DNA) has been altered are called genetically modified organisms (GMOs). Food and feed which contain or consist of such GMOs, or are produced from GMOs, are called genetically modified (GM) food or feed [1] Global Warming | Global warming is the rise in the average temperature of Earth’s atmosphere and oceans since the late 19th century and its projected continuation [8]. Global warming is said to be accelerated by → green house gases. Glucose | Monosaccharide (or simple sugar). G. is the most important carbohydrate (sugar) in biology. G. is formed by photosynthesis or hydrolyse of many carbohydrates e. g. starch. Greenhouse gas GHG | Gaseous constituent of the atmosphere, both natural and anthropogenic, that absorbs and emits radiation at specific wavelengths within the spectrum of

infrared radiation emitted by the earth’s surface, the atmosphere, and clouds [1, 9] Greenwashing | The act of misleading consumers regarding the environmental practices of a company, or the environmental benefits of a product or service [1, 10] Granulate, granules | small plastic particles (3-4 millimetres), a form in which plastic is sold and fed into machines, easy to handle and dose. Humus | In agriculture, ‘humus’ is often used simply to mean mature → compost, or natural compost extracted from a forest or other spontaneous source for use to amend soil. Hydrophilic | Property: ‘water-friendly’, soluble in water or other polar solvents (e.g. used in conjunction with a plastic which is not water resistant and weather proof or that absorbs water such as Polyamide (PA). Hydrophobic | Property: ‘water-resistant’, not soluble in water (e.g. a plastic which is water resistant and weather proof, or that does not absorb any water such as Polyethylene (PE) or Polypropylene (PP). IBAW | → European Bioplastics Industrial composting | Industrial composting is an established process with commonly agreed upon requirements (e.g. temperature, timeframe) for transforming biodegradable waste into stable, sanitised products to be used in agriculture. The criteria for industrial compostability of packaging have been defined in the EN 13432. Materials and products complying with this standard can be certified and subsequently labelled accordingly [1, 7] [bM 06/08, bM 02/09]

Integral Foam | foam with a compact skin and porous core and a transition zone in between. ISO | International Organization for Standardization JBPA | Japan Bioplastics Association LCA | Life Cycle Assessment (sometimes also referred to as life cycle analysis, ecobalance, and → cradle-to-grave analysis) is the investigation and valuation of the environmental impacts of a given product or service caused. [bM 01/09]

Microorganism | Living organisms of microscopic size, such as bacteria, funghi or yeast. Molecule | group of at least two atoms held together by covalent chemical bonds. Monomer | molecules that are linked by polymerization to form chains of molecules and then plastics Mulch film | Foil to cover bottom of farmland PBAT | Polybutylene adipate terephthalate, is an aliphatic-aromatic copolyester that has the properties of conventional polyethylene but is fully biodegradable under industrial composting. PBAT is made from fossil petroleum with first attempts being made to produce it partly from renewable resources [bM 06/09] PBS | Polybutylene succinate, a 100% biodegradable polymer, made from (e.g. bio-BDO) and succinic acid, which can also be produced biobased [bM 03/12]. PC | Polycarbonate, thermoplastic polyester, petroleum based, used for e.g. baby bottles or CDs. Criticized for its BPA (→ Bisphenol-A) content.

Basics PCL | Polycaprolactone, a synthetic (fossil based), biodegradable bioplastic, e.g. used as a blend component.

PPC | Polypropylene Carbonate, a bioplastic made by copolymerizing CO2 with propylene oxide (PO) [bM 04/12]

PE | Polyethylene, thermoplastic polymerised from ethylene. Can be made from renewable resources (sugar cane via bio-ethanol)

Renewable Resources | agricultural raw materials, which are not used as food or feed, but as raw material for industrial products or to generate energy

[bM 05/10]

PET | Polyethylenterephthalate, transparent polyester used for bottles and film PGA | Polyglycolic acid or Polyglycolide is a biodegradable, thermoplastic polymer and the simplest linear, aliphatic polyester. Besides ist use in the biomedical field, PGA has been introduced as a barrier resin [bM 03/09] PHA | Polyhydroxyalkanoates are linear polyesters produced in nature by bacterial fermentation of sugar or lipids. The most common type of PHA is → PHB. PHB | Polyhydroxybutyrate (better poly-3-hydroxybutyrate), is a polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA), a polymer belonging to the polyesters class. PHB is produced by micro-organisms apparently in response to conditions of physiological stress. The polymer is primarily a product of carbon assimilation (from glucose or starch) and is employed by micro-organisms as a form of energy storage molecule to be metabolized when other common energy sources are not available. PHB has properties similar to those of PP, however it is stiffer and more brittle. PHBH | Polyhydroxy butyrate hexanoate (better poly 3-hydroxybutyrate-co-3-hydroxyhexanoate) is a polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA), Like other biopolymers from the family of the polyhydroxyalkanoates PHBH is produced by microorganisms in the fermentation process, where it is accumulated in the microorganism’s body for nutrition. The main features of PHBH are its excellent biodegradability, combined with a high degree of hydrolysis and heat stability. [bM 03/09, 01/10, 03/11] PLA | Polylactide or Polylactic Acid (PLA), a biodegradable, thermoplastic, linear aliphatic polyester based on lactic acid, a natural acid, is mainly produced by fermentation of sugar or starch with the help of micro-organisms. Lactic acid comes in two isomer forms, i.e. as laevorotatory D(-)lactic acid and as dextrorotary L(+)lactic acid. In each case two lactic acid molecules form a circular lactide molecule which, depending on its composition, can be a D-D-lactide, an L-L-lactide or a meso-lactide (having one D and one L molecule). The chemist makes use of this variability. During polymerisation the chemist combines the lactides such that the PLA plastic obtained has the characteristics that he desires. The purity of the infeed material is an important factor in successful polymerisation and thus for the economic success of the process, because so far the cleaning of the lactic acid produced by the fermentation has been relatively costly [12]. Modified PLA types can be produced by the use of the right additives or by a combinations of L- and D- lactides (stereocomplexing), which then have the required rigidity for use at higher temperatures [13] [bM 01/09] Plastics | Materials with large molecular chains of natural or fossil raw materials, produced by chemical or biochemical reactions.

Saccharins or carbohydrates | Saccharins or carbohydrates are name for the sugar-family. Saccharins are monomer or polymer sugar units. For example, there are known mono-, di- and polysaccharose. → glucose is a monosaccarin. They are important for the diet and produced biology in plants. Semi-finished products | plastic in form of sheet, film, rods or the like to be further processed into finshed products Sorbitol | Sugar alcohol, obtained by reduction of glucose changing the aldehyde group to an additional hydroxyl group. S. is used as a plasticiser for bioplastics based on starch. Starch | Natural polymer (carbohydrate) consisting of → amylose and → amylopectin, gained from maize, potatoes, wheat, tapioca etc. When glucose is connected to polymerchains in definite way the result (product) is called starch. Each molecule is based on 300 -12000-glucose units. Depending on the connection, there are two types → amylose and → amylopectin known. [bM 05/09] Starch derivate | Starch derivates are based on the chemical structure of → starch. The chemical structure can be changed by introducing new functional groups without changing the → starch polymer. The product has different chemical qualities. Mostly the hydrophilic character is not the same. Starch-ester | One characteristic of every starch-chain is a free hydroxyl group. When every hydroxyl group is connect with ethan acid one product is starch-ester with different chemical properties. Starch propionate and starch butyrate | Starch propionate and starch butyrate can be synthesised by treating the → starch with propane or butanic acid. The product structure is still based on → starch. Every based → glucose fragment is connected with a propionate or butyrate ester group. The product is more hydrophobic than → starch.

and social equity. In other words, businesses have to expand their responsibility to include these environmental and social dimensions. Sustainability is about making products useful to markets and, at the same time, having societal benefits and lower environmental impact than the alternatives currently available. It also implies a commitment to continuous improvement that should result in a further reduction of the environmental footprint of today’s products, processes and raw materials used. Thermoplastics | Plastics which soften or melt when heated and solidify when cooled (solid at room temperature). Thermoplastic Starch | (TPS) → starch that was modified (cooked, complexed) to make it a plastic resin Thermoset | Plastics (resins) which do not soften or melt when heated. Examples are epoxy resins or unsaturated polyester resins. Vinçotte | independant certifying organisation for the assessment on the conformity of bioplastics WPC | Wood Plastic Composite. Composite materials made of wood fiber/flour and plastics (mostly polypropylene). Yard Waste | Grass clippings, leaves, trimmings, garden residue.

References: [1] Environmental Communication Guide, European Bioplastics, Berlin, Germany, 2012 [2] ISO 14067. Carbon footprint of products Requirements and guidelines for quantification and communication [3] CEN TR 15932, Plastics - Recommendation for terminology and characterisation of biopolymers and bioplastics, 2010 [4] CEN/TS 16137, Plastics - Determination of bio-based carbon content, 2011 [5] ASTM D6866, Standard Test Methods for Determining the Biobased Content of Solid, Liquid, and Gaseous Samples Using Radiocarbon Analysis [6] SPI: Understanding Biobased Carbon Content, 2012

Sustainable | An attempt to provide the best outcomes for the human and natural environments both now and into the indefinite future. One of the most often cited definitions of sustainability is the one created by the Brundtland Commission, led by the former Norwegian Prime Minister Gro Harlem Brundtland. The Brundtland Commission defined sustainable development as development that ‘meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.’ Sustainability relates to the continuity of economic, social, institutional and environmental aspects of human society, as well as the non-human environment).

[7] EN 13432, Requirements for packaging recoverable through composting and biodegradation. Test scheme and evaluation criteria for the final acceptance of packaging, 2000

Sustainability | (as defined by European Bioplastics e.V.) has three dimensions: economic, social and environmental. This has been known as “the triple bottom line of sustainability”. This means that sustainable development involves the simultaneous pursuit of economic prosperity, environmental protection

[13] de Vos, S.: Improving heat-resistance of PLA using poly(D-lactide), bioplastics MAGAZINE, Vol. 3, Issue 02/2008

[8] Wikipedia [9] ISO 14064 Greenhouse gases -- Part 1: Specification with guidance..., 2006 [10] Terrachoice, 2010, [11] Thielen, M.: Bioplastics: Basics. Applications. Markets, Polymedia Publisher, 2012 [12] Lörcks, J.: Biokunststoffe, Broschüre der FNR, 2005

[14] de Wilde, B.: Anaerobic Digestion, bioplastics MAGAZINE, Vol 4., Issue 06/2009

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shutterstock, YaiSirichai

The T bioplastics industry in Korea

he global bioplastics market is booming – total production capacity is set to grow 400% by 2017, and the European Commission has designated bioplastics as a lead market. The Korean bio-industry is also growing, with production valued at 7.12 trillion Won (around € 5.1 billion) in 2012, and the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy announcing in April 2014 that around 215 billion Won (over € 154 million) will be invested into the bio-chemicals industry over the next 5 years. Despite this growth in the bio-industry, the Korean market for bioplastics remains small, and internationally accessible information is hard to find. In April and May 2014, Latitude talked to a number of key players in the industry to find out more about the market for bioplastics in Korea. It is hard to imagine, driving through the rice fields and foothills of Moga-myeon, (a little town near Icheon), that just down the road thousands of biodegradable plastic sheets are being produced every day. Green Chemical Ltd. constructed their plant in 2006 and started producing plastic sheets made from 100% biodegradable PLA. These PLA sheets are now used in items such as food containers, and sold in supermarkets and department stores. Green Chemical imports 100 tonnes of raw PLA material every month, and is looking forward to growth in the biodegradable waste bag and soil cover markets. While they have found success, Deputy General Manager Hwang Dae-youn claims that the market for PLA is only about 200 tonnes per month, still much less than 1% of the total plastic market in Korea. On the other hand, the market for PET is 100 times larger at around 20,000 tonnes per month. It is easy to see why companies are sceptical about this sector of the new industry.

By Thomas Vink Assistant Manager Latitude Ltd. Seoul, South Korea


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However, Korea has an established history of R&D into the biomaterials industry. To help grow the bioplastics market, the Korea Biodegradable Plastics Association (KBPA) was established in 1999. The scope of the association was expanded in 2008 to cover (fully and partly) biobased polymers in addition to fully biodegradable polymers, and is now called the Korean Bioplastics Association. The KBPA Chairperson, Prof. Chin



South Korea

In-Joo, claims that Korean companies have been investing in bioplastics since 1993. Prof. Chin believes companies in Korea have developed the materials and have done the research, but the “balance is not yet right,” and getting the message out about bioplastics has proved to be a difficult task. The general consensus is that government regulations have not been kind to the bioplastics industry. Hwang Dae Youn would like government regulations to change in order to help grow the industry. “Antipathy is plaguing the industry”, he claims. Currently, the standards in Korea are so few that many organisations are ignoring bioplastics or believe it has no future. Even when former President Lee Myung Bak invested heavily into green industries, and “bioplastics did not really benefit” according to Prof. Chin In-Joo. J.J. Hwang, a senior research engineer at SK Chemicals, claims that current government policy “dates from 20 years ago,” and “is an obstacle to the growth of the bio-industry… it is preventing a boom!”. SK Chemicals has invested into both biodegradable and biobased plastics, but because of the market situation it has been difficult to get these products into mainstream use. There are also claims that the bioplastics market has remained small because of a focus only on biodegradable plastics. Korea Biomaterial Packaging Association Chairperson, Prof. You Young-sun, believes that a lack of usability and durability of biodegradable plastic are weaknesses that prevent the materials from being a viable option at the moment. J.J. Hwang recommends that, for now, we have to forget about the biodegradability of plastic and instead focus on “getting out of petroleum.” He states that “biodegradable material is just one of many materials in this industry.” and laments the fact that only fully biodegradable plastics are excluded from charges under Korea’s Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) system. He believes that products listed under the EPR need to be able to state a biocontents policy, where charges are reduced depending on how much biodegradable material is used. With a bio-contents policy manufacturers could make products that are bio-based

but still cost effective and multi-use. In this way, use of PLA and other biobased products would become more popular, and the proportion of biomass content used could gradually be increased as bioplastic products become normalized and prices fall. Jang Seok-chan, Head Office Administration Manager at the newly formed Korea Packaging Recycling Cooperative, gave Latitude an in-depth view covering the EPR and Korea’s recycling system. To summarise, the EPR system is effective in many respects and has worked well at increasing the recycling rate. For this reason Korea’s EPR system has been rightly praised by many. But there appear to be several loopholes where the policy could be abused. The concept of passing on responsibility to someone else along the chain, whilst doing just enough to pass a certain quota, has meant that no party really has any reason to advance the system or make it more eco-friendly. Korea’s Ministry of Environment has even acknowledged this issue, stating “there have been insufficient efforts deployed in adding higher value to the recycling industry.” Currently, the bioplastics market is too small for biodegradable and/or biobased plastic to be recycled in the main stream, and thus waste PLA is collected and incinerated. Therefore, if one wants to recycle bioplastics, one must increase the quantity of the product used. Prof. Chin In-Joo echoed this point, claiming that “plastic made from 100% PLA can be collected and recycled [but] quantity is important.” Prof. Chin went on to state that composting could be an even better solution, both environmentally and economically, but that Korea needs to invest in a proper composting infrastructure. Either way, facilities for recycling and composting are lacking. There is plenty of room for new technological solutions that can upgrade Korea’s recycling facilities and help to efficiently recycle or compost more types of plastic material. Currently, according to Prof. Chin, of all plastic waste, only PET plastic is recycled, and even that is incinerated if it has been in contact with food. Trying to boost the bioplastics industry by pushing for a change in government regulations has proved so far fruitless. Therefore, the most likely way forward, in terms of boosting the industry, is to grow the market. Companies like Green Chemical Ltd., whose sales are growing, have proved that there is a market for bioplastics, if you have clear goals, a narrow focus, are willing to collaborate locally and internationally, and have a well-developed promotional campaign. Given the knowledge and technology that so many companies and associations in Korea have the potential for expansion of the bioplastics industry is high. However, investment in research and material production alone has proved lacking in terms of outcome. Now, if the bioplastics market is to grow without a change to government regulations, then manufacturers need to stand up and start producing and promoting bioplastic products. For a copy of the full report, please contact Latitude.

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Mass Balance Can ISSC PLUS certification be misleading – if the bio-based share is not labelled too?

Bridging the gap to a sustainable bio based economy

Comment by Michael Carus, nova-Institute

Comment by Dr. Jan Henke (ISCC PLUS)

On 23 April 2014 SABIC announced “that it will launch its first portfolio of certified renewable polyolefins, certified under the ISCC Plus certification scheme, which involves strict traceability and requires a chain of custody based on a mass balance system. The portfolio, which includes renewable polyethylenes (PE) and polypropylenes (PP), responds to the increasing demand for sustainable materials from SABIC’s customers.”

Why a mass balance approach for sustainability certification and clear claims are essential

Imagine you see the new SABIC PE or PP granulates with the label ISCC PLUS which claims “Certified Sustainability” – what will you think about the product? What does it mean? Are all of the PE or PP granulates themselves “certified as sustainable”? Or is it the feedstock used for the production of the material? The truth is: Neither of them are! The certification applies only to the biomass share of the feedstock and the granulates, without any information on the actual quantity of the share. SABIC uses certified sustainable “animal fats and waste” in their crackers: “We have optimized our technology to allow the production of renewable PP and PE using renewable feedstocks, which are made from waste fats.” But there is no minimum share of biomass required. So even if SABIC uses only 5% (certified) biomass and 95% crude oil for their PE and PP production, the ISCC PLUS label on the granulate still claims “Certified Sustainability” – although 95% of the feedstock and the product are not bio-based and therefore NOT certified as sustainable! We think that this is not a good idea. This could be misleading and can be harmful to the ISCC PLUS label and the companies using it. Some NGOs might (and will) call it green-washing. Is SABIC trying to get a GreenPremium price without having relevant additional costs? We suggest that the ISCC PLUS label – as well as other labels such as RSB – should only be used in direct correlation to the quantified share of the bio-based feedstock which they classify. That means in detail: It has to be clear that the label is only for the bio-based share of the feedstock in the product. That would mean in practice: The bio-based carbon content should always be labelled too – for example using the established label from Vinçotte or DIN CERTCO. Nova-Institut GmbH Hürth, Germany


bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9

The industrial use of bio based resources in particular in the chemical sector is stagnating. To increase their share, sustainable supply chains must be built up. This must be economically viable and sustainable. In the beginning it is only possible with low physical shares in the final product. Opponents of this approach argue that claims should only be made for a high physical share. These demands are out of the ivory tower. They negate the fact that for many producers a direct switch to high physical shares doubles costs or is in practical terms not feasible. The baby would be thrown out with the bath water. The share of certified bio based resources would decline. Under the mass balance approach, companies producing different outputs from the same feedstock (e.g. an integrated chemical site) can allocate the certified sustainable bio based share to only one or several out of all outputs. Under the global sustainability certification system ISCC PLUS there are two major prerequisites to do this: The certified sustainable output volume can never exceed the equivalent amount of certified feedstock. Clear claims must be used. They must reference the mass balance approach and never the physical content, unless this is clearly detectable. In the SABIC case the claim is not “certified sustainability” or “X% physical share of certified sustainable feedstock”. SABIC and their customers must always make reference to the mass balance approach. Other claims shall not be made. To promote the bio based economy it is essential to start with a mass balance


RSB approach to certification of bio-based chemicals Comment by Melanie Williams (RSB) approach that allows smaller ratios of certified sustainable feedstock. Integrated sites using thousands of tons of fossil and non-sustainable feedstock cannot from one day to the other switch to certified sustainable bio based inputs. Further on the input can be spread over hundreds of outputs. A physical analysis (e.g. 14C) may only detect a small bio content for a specific product. A mass balance approach would enable a company to allocate the bio content to a specific product. When demand is increasing other products can be included. At a certain point in time high physical shares will also become economically viable. Therefore, the mass balance approach is a stepping-stone towards the bio based economy. Opponents are freezing the current situation and will contribute to the stagnation of the bio based economy, although they claim aiming to achieve the opposite. The physical segregation of certified sustainable feedstock or the proof of relevant physical contents is also possible with ISCC PLUS. It might be an advantage to companies producing from 100% certified sustainable material or with high detectable shares. To increase the share of certified sustainable biomass in the chemical industry ISCC PLUS is promoting the use of both mass balance and segregation. This allows companies to reach higher shares on a continuous improvement basis and to promote the bio based economy. ISCC System GmbH Köln – Germany

Bio-based alternatives are increasingly being used to substitute petroleum-derived products. Manufacturers of bio-based materials are keen to show consumers that their products have been produced responsibly from sustainable biomass; certification to a reputed Voluntary Sustainability Standard is the preferred option. The Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials (RSB) is the environmental and social certification that came out as the top performer in recent studies commissioned by WWF [1] and IUCN [2]. As manufacturers take their first steps towards producing bio-based drop-in chemicals, there will often be the need to use existing facilities, which currently process petroleum derived/fossil materials, somewhere in the supply chain. This will inevitably lead to the dilution of the bio-based material with fossil material. However, consumers will want to be assured that product labeled as ‘bio-based’ contain a minimum bio content. After a wide-ranging public consultation, RSB has set a requirement for a minimum of 25% bio-based content. This requirement specifies that the annual, average bio-based content, measured according to ASTM D6866, CEN/TS 16137 or any equivalent protocol, shall not be less than 25% by weight. A mass balance approach can be used to cope with a fluctuating biobased content as long as the annual average is always shown to exceed the 25% threshold. This average bio-based content should be stated on the product documentation and packaging.

[1] [2] on_best_quality.pdf

An RSB certified biochemical manufacturer can make a claim on their product or packaging that their product mix contains RSB compliant bio-chemicals. Companies can also make a claim in their marketing and publicity that they support socially and environmentally responsible production of biomass, bio-chemicals and bio-products. SABIC and BASF are to be congratulated for using bio-based feedstock, but under the RSB system they could not use a specific claim on their products until they reached the 25% threshold. So how should a company obtain recognition for their efforts in the early stages of replacing fossil-based products with biobased ones? They can get credit with consumers by showing that they are in compliance with the RSB Principles and Criteria for environmental and social sustainability. As they increase the bio-based content of their products to meet the minimum 25% threshold, they are then ready to make a strong claim that their product is bio-based, and that their product meets the robust bio-based sustainability criteria in the RSB standard. Related to this, RSB is currently considering the introduction of certificates, which are sold separately to the product, (commonly called a ‘book-and-claim’ system) to help manufacturers source sustainable bio-based feedstock even when none may be available in proximity to their manufacturing sites. This will also help companies in the early stages of replacing fossil-based products with bio-based alternatives. Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials (RSB) Geneva, Switzerland

bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9


Suppliers Guide 1. Raw Materials

AGRANA Starch Thermoplastics Conrathstrasse 7 A-3950 Gmuend, Austria Tel: +43 676 8926 19374

Shandong Fuwin New Material Co., Ltd. Econorm® Biodegradable & Compostable Resin North of Baoshan Road, Zibo City, Shandong Province P.R. China. Phone: +86 533 7986016 Fax: +86 533 6201788 Mobile: +86-13953357190 CNMHELEN@GMAIL.COM

Showa Denko Europe GmbH Konrad-Zuse-Platz 4 81829 Munich, Germany Tel.: +49 89 93996226

Simply contact:

Tel.: +49 2161 6884467 Stay permanently listed in the Suppliers Guide with your company logo and contact information. For only 6,– EUR per mm, per issue you can be present among top suppliers in the field of bioplastics.

39 mm

For Example:

Polymedia Publisher GmbH Dammer Str. 112 41066 Mönchengladbach Germany Tel. +49 2161 664864 Fax +49 2161 631045

GRAFE-Group Waldecker Straße 21, 99444 Blankenhain, Germany Tel. +49 36459 45 0

Jincheng, Lin‘an, Hangzhou, Zhejiang 311300, P.R. China China contact: Grace Jin mobile: 0086 135 7578 9843 Europe contact(Belgium): Susan Zhang mobile: 0032 478 991619 PolyOne DuPont de Nemours International S.A. Avenue Melville Wilson, 2 2 chemin du Pavillon Zoning de la Fagne 1218 - Le Grand Saconnex 5330 Assesse 1.1 bio based monomers Switzerland Belgium Tel.: +41 22 171 51 11 Tel.: + 32 83 660 211 Fax: +41 22 580 22 45

Tel: +86 351-8689356 Fax: +86 351-8689718

Corbion Purac Arkelsedijk 46, P.O. Box 21 4200 AA Gorinchem The Netherlands Tel.: +31 (0)183 695 695 Fax: +31 (0)183 695 604 1.2 compounds

Sample Charge: 39mm x 6,00 € = 234,00 € per entry/per issue

Sample Charge for one year: 6 issues x 234,00 EUR = 1,404.00 € The entry in our Suppliers Guide is bookable for one year (6 issues) and extends automatically if it’s not canceled three month before expiry.


bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9

FKuR Kunststoff GmbH Siemensring 79 D - 47 877 Willich Tel. +49 2154 9251-0 Tel.: +49 2154 9251-51

WinGram Industry CO., LTD Great River(Qin Xin) Plastic Manufacturer CO., LTD Mobile (China): +86-13113833156 Mobile (Hong Kong): +852-63078857 Fax: +852-3184 8934 Email: 1.3 PLA

Evonik Industries AG Paul Baumann Straße 1 45772 Marl, Germany Tel +49 2365 49-4717

API S.p.A. Via Dante Alighieri, 27 36065 Mussolente (VI), Italy Telephone +39 0424 579711

Shenzhen Esun Ind. Co;Ltd Tel: +86-755-2603 1978 1.4 starch-based bioplastics

Natureplast 11 rue François Arago 14123 Ifs – France Tel. +33 2 31 83 50 87

Kingfa Sci. & Tech. Co., Ltd. No.33 Kefeng Rd, Sc. City, Guangzhou Hi-Tech Ind. Development Zone, Guangdong, P.R. China. 510663 Tel: +86 (0)20 6622 1696 FLEX-162 Biodeg. Blown Film Resin! Bio-873 4-Star Inj. Bio-Based Resin!

Limagrain Céréales Ingrédients ZAC „Les Portes de Riom“ - BP 173 63204 Riom Cedex - France Tel. +33 (0)4 73 67 17 00 Fax +33 (0)4 73 67 17 10

Suppliers Guide 6. Equipment

1.6 masterbatches

6.1 Machinery & Molds

BIOTEC Biologische Naturverpackungen Werner-Heisenberg-Strasse 32 46446 Emmerich/Germany Tel.: +49 (0) 2822 – 92510

GRAFE-Group Waldecker Straße 21, 99444 Blankenhain, Germany Tel. +49 36459 45 0

Taghleef Industries SpA, Italy Via E. Fermi, 46 33058 San Giorgio di Nogaro (UD) Contact Frank Ernst Tel. +49 2402 7096989 Mobile +49 160 4756573 4. Bioplastics products

ROQUETTE 62 136 LESTREM, FRANCE 00 33 (0) 3 21 63 36 00

Grabio Greentech Corporation Tel: +886-3-598-6496 No. 91, Guangfu N. Rd., Hsinchu Industrial Park,Hukou Township, Hsinchu County 30351, Taiwan

Wuhan Huali Environmental Technology Co.,Ltd. No.8, North Huashiyuan Road, Donghu New Tech Development Zone, Wuhan, Hubei, China Tel: +86-27-87926666 Fax: + 86-27-87925999,

PolyOne Avenue Melville Wilson, 2 Zoning de la Fagne 5330 Assesse Belgium Tel.: + 32 83 660 211 Minima Technology Co., Ltd. 2. Additives/Secondary raw materials Esmy Huang, Marketing Manager No.33. Yichang E. Rd., Taipin City, Taichung County 411, Taiwan (R.O.C.) Tel. +886(4)2277 6888 Fax +883(4)2277 6989 Mobil +886(0)982-829988 GRAFE-Group Skype esmy325 Waldecker Straße 21, 99444 Blankenhain, Germany Tel. +49 36459 45 0

Rhein Chemie Rheinau GmbH Duesseldorfer Strasse 23-27 68219 Mannheim, Germany Phone: +49 (0)621-8907-233 Fax: +49 (0)621-8907-8233

1.5 PHA

TianAn Biopolymer No. 68 Dagang 6th Rd, Beilun, Ningbo, China, 315800 Tel. +86-57 48 68 62 50 2 Fax +86-57 48 68 77 98 0

Metabolix, Inc. Bio-based and biodegradable resins and performance additives 21 Erie Street Cambridge, MA 02139, USA US +1-617-583-1700 DE +49 (0) 221 / 88 88 94 00

Huhtamaki Films Sonja Haug Zweibrückenstraße 15-25 91301 Forchheim Tel. +49-9191 81203 Fax +49-9191 811203 Sidaplax UK : +44 (1) 604 76 66 99 Sidaplax Belgium: +32 9 210 80 10 Plastic Suppliers: +1 866 378 4178

ProTec Polymer Processing GmbH Stubenwald-Allee 9 64625 Bensheim, Deutschland Tel. +49 6251 77061 0 Fax +49 6251 77061 500 6.2 Laboratory Equipment

MODA: Biodegradability Analyzer SAIDA FDS INC. 143-10 Isshiki, Yaizu, Natur-Tec® - Northern Technologies Shizuoka,Japan Tel:+81-54-624-6260 4201 Woodland Road Circle Pines, MN 55014 USA Tel. +1 763.404.8700 Fax +1 763.225.6645 7. Plant engineering

3. Semi finished products 3.1 films

Molds, Change Parts and Turnkey Solutions for the PET/Bioplastic Container Industry 284 Pinebush Road Cambridge Ontario Canada N1T 1Z6 Tel. +1 519 624 9720 Fax +1 519 624 9721

NOVAMONT S.p.A. Via Fauser , 8 28100 Novara - ITALIA Fax +39.0321.699.601 Tel. +39.0321.699.611

President Packaging Ind., Corp. PLA Paper Hot Cup manufacture In Taiwan, Tel.: +886-6-570-4066 ext.5531 Fax: +886-6-570-4077

EREMA Engineering Recycling Maschinen und Anlagen GmbH Unterfeldstrasse 3 4052 Ansfelden, AUSTRIA Phone: +43 (0) 732 / 3190-0 Fax: +43 (0) 732 / 3190-23

Uhde Inventa-Fischer GmbH Holzhauser Strasse 157–159 D-13509 Berlin Tel. +49 30 43 567 5 Fax +49 30 43 567 699 Uhde Inventa-Fischer AG Via Innovativa 31 CH-7013 Domat/Ems Tel. +41 81 632 63 11 Fax +41 81 632 74 03

bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9


Suppliers Guide 9. Services

Biopolynov 11 rue François Arago 14123 Ifs – France Tel. +33 2 31 83 50 87 www.

10.2 Universities

narocon Dr. Harald Kaeb Tel.: +49 30-28096930

UL International TTC GmbH Rheinuferstrasse 7-9, Geb. R33 47829 Krefeld-Uerdingen, Germany Tel.: +49 (0) 2151 5370-370 Fax: +49 (0) 2151 5370-371 10. Institutions

Osterfelder Str. 3 46047 Oberhausen Tel.: +49 (0)208 8598 1227 Fax: +49 (0)208 8598 1424

Institut für Kunststofftechnik Universität Stuttgart Böblinger Straße 70 70199 Stuttgart Tel +49 711/685-62814

nova-Institut GmbH Chemiepark Knapsack Industriestrasse 300 50354 Huerth, Germany Tel.: +49(0)2233-48-14 40 E-Mail:

10.1 Associations

BPI - The Biodegradable Products Institute 331 West 57th Street, Suite 415 New York, NY 10019, USA Tel. +1-888-274-5646

Bioplastics Consulting Tel. +49 2161 664864

IfBB – Institute for Bioplastics and Biocomposites University of Applied Sciences and Arts Hanover Faculty II – Mechanical and Bioprocess Engineering Heisterbergallee 12 30453 Hannover, Germany Tel.: +49 5 11 / 92 96 - 22 69 Fax: +49 5 11 / 92 96 - 99 - 22 69

Michigan State University Department of Chemical Engineering & Materials Science Professor Ramani Narayan East Lansing MI 48824, USA Tel. +1 517 719 7163

European Bioplastics e.V. Marienstr. 19/20 10117 Berlin, Germany Tel. +49 30 284 82 350 Fax +49 30 284 84 359

‘Basics‘ book on bioplastics This book, created and published by Polymedia Publisher, maker of bioplastics MAGAis available in English and German language.


The book is intended to offer a rapid and uncomplicated introduction into the subject of bioplastics, and is aimed at all interested readers, in particular those who have not yet had the opportunity to dig deeply into the subject, such as students or those just joining this industry, and lay readers. It gives an introduction to plastics and bioplastics, explains which renewable resources can be used to produce bioplastics, what types of bioplastic exist, and which ones are already on the market. Further aspects, such as market development, the agricultural land required, and waste disposal, are also examined. An extensive index allows the reader to find specific aspects quickly, and is complemented by a comprehensive literature list and a guide to sources of additional information on the Internet. The author Michael Thielen is editor and publisher bioplastics MAGAZINE. He is a qualified machinery design engineer with a degree in plastics technology from the RWTH University in Aachen. He has written several books on the subject of blow-moulding technology and disseminated his knowledge of plastics in numerous presentations, seminars, guest lectures and teaching assignments.

110 pages full color, paperback ISBN 978-3-9814981-1-0: Bioplastics ISBN 978-3-9814981-0-3: Biokunststoffe

Order now for € 18.65 or US-$ 25.00 (+ VAT where applicable, plus shipping and handling, ask for details) order at, by phone +49 2161 6884463 or by e-mail

Or subscribe and get it as a free gift (see page 69 for details, outside German y only) 48

bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9


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Event Calendar 2nd International Conference Bio- based Polymers and Composites

24.08.2014 - 28.08.2014 - Visegrád, Hungary

Bio-based Global Summit 2014

the next six issues for €149.–1)

09.09.2014 - 10.09.2014 - Brussels, Belgium Thon EU Hotel Brussels

World Bio Markets Brasil

24.09.2014 - 26.09.2014 - Sao Paulo, Brasil

Special offer for students and young professionals € 99.-

International Symposium on BioPolymers - ISBP2014 29.09.2014 - 01.10.2014 - Santos, Brazil Mendez Plaza Hotel


2nd Bioplastic Materials Topical Conference 2014 01.10.2014 - 02.10.2014 - Chicago, Ilinois,USA Embassy Suite Hotel, Schaumburg

Send a scan 2) aged 35 and below. your ID or d, car t den stu r of you ... of pro similar 9549w6z5d5 47f5&llr=7ppotodab

Bioproducts World 2014

05.10.2014 - 08.10.2014 - Columbus, OH, USA Columbus Convention Centre -5258 ISSN 1862



BioEnvironmental Polymer Society

03 | 2014

14.10.2014 - 17.10.2014 - Kansas City, USA Kauffman Foundation Conference Center

Highligh ts Injection Moulding | 10 Thermose t | 34

4. Kooperationsforum Biopolymere 21.10.2014 - Straubing, Germany Joseph-von-Fraunhofer-Halle

World Bio Markets USA

27.10.2014 - 29.10.2014 - San Diego (CA), USA E

Vol. 9




Ecochem The Global Sustainable Chemistry & Engineering Event 11.11.2014 - 13.11.2014 Congress Center Basel ... is read in 91 countrie


01.12.2014 - Brussels, Belgium The Square Brussels


Mention the promotion code ‘watch‘ or ‘book‘ and you will get our watch or the book3) Bioplastics Basics. Applications. Markets. for free 1) Offer valid until 30 Sept. 2014 3) Gratis-Buch in Deutschland nicht möglich, no free book in Germany

You can meet us! Please contact us in advance by e-mail.


Bio-based Plastics – How do we Grow the EU Industry?

9th European Bioplastics Conference

02.12.2014 - 03.12.2014 - Brussels, Belgium The Square, Brussels

3rd Conference on Carbon Dioxide as Feedstock for Chemistry and Polymers 02.12.2014 - 03.12.2014 - Essen, Germany Haus der Technik

bio!pac - biobased packaging

12.05.2015 - 13.05.2015 - Amsterdam, The Netherlands Novotel, Amsterdam City

bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9


Companies in this issue Company


Aescap Venture




Agrana Starch Thermoplastics


Forum Technol. & Wirtsch. 46



Fraunhofer UMSICHT

Company Plastic Suppliers






Grabio Greentech






Green Chemical


Procter & Gamble








46, 47



46, 47

President Packaging

47 6



ProTec Polymer Processing

Armacell Benelux


Güth & Wolf



Aster Capital








Huntsman ING Venture Partners




3, 44

Bayern Innovativ






Biopolynov Biotec Biowerth


Reed Exhibitions



Roquette 48


Roundtable on Sust. Biomat. (RSB)

ISCC System



45 3, 44



Jakob Winter





Jinhui Zhaolong





John Deere


Shandong Fuwin

KHS Corpoplast


Shenzhen Esun Industrial



10, 46 46

Showa Denko



Korea Biomat. Packaging Ass.


SK Chemicals




Korea Packaging Recycl. Coop.


Sofinnova Partners




Korean Bioplastics Association


Sonae Industria




Swire Pacific





5, 6, 7, 23, 31



Limagrain Céréales Ingrédients


Cornell University




Tetra Pak










Maverick Enterprises


Trellis Earth


De Hoge Dennen Capital




Trinchero Family Estates


Deutsches Kunststoffmuseum


Michigan State University


Uhde Inventa-Fischer

DIN Certco




UL Thermoplastics






Univ.Stuttgart (IKT)




University of Guelph


Erema Espaçoplas


European Bioplastics

Natur-Tec 48

European Ind. Hemp Ass.


Evonik Industries

46, 51


28, 37

24, 28

2, 46

35, 47 48



Navitas Capital










10, 30, 32, 44


48 47, 52

Fonti di Vinadio




Ford Motor Company


Organic Waste Systems





8, 29

Capricorn Ventrure Partners

47 37





Qmilch Deutschland

Inst. f. bioplastics & biocomposites




47 27

polymediaconsult 47





Wuhan Huali

17, 47

Zhejiang Hangzhou Xinfu Pharm.



Editorial Planner Issue



edit/ad/ Deadline







Editorial Focus (1)

Editorial Focus (2)



Fiber / Textile / Nonwoven


Building Blocks


Films / Flexibles / Bags

Consumer Electronics


Subject to changes


bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/14] Vol. 9

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bioplastics MAGAZINE 04-2014  

bioplastics MAGAZINE is the only independent trade magazine worldwide dedicated to bioplastics (i.e. plastics made from renewable resources...

bioplastics MAGAZINE 04-2014  

bioplastics MAGAZINE is the only independent trade magazine worldwide dedicated to bioplastics (i.e. plastics made from renewable resources...