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06 | 2008

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News BioSolar to Begin

News BioSolar to Begin Pre- Production Runs of Its Solar Module Component BioSolar, Inc., from Santa Clarita, California, USA is the developer of a technology to produce bio-based materials from renewable plant sources that reduce the cost of photovoltaic solar cells. The company recently announced that they expect to begin commercial production of its BioBacksheet over the next few months, and is gearing up for pre-production runs. The announcement follows recent news reports that BioSolar has filed a comprehensive patent application ensuring BioSolar full protection on its BioBacksheet technology. “The ability to evaluate and remedy real-time issues encountered during multiple pre-production manufacturing runs will prove invaluable as we gear up for full-scale production,” said Dr. David Lee, BioSolar’s CEO. Lee explained, “Pre-production pilot runs of BioBacksheets are very narrow, approximately one foot wide, while normal manufacturing runs will be five or six feet wide. Once pilot runs are successful, the next step is to transition to commercial production manufacturing runs. Physical properties of the backsheet from each pre-production run are measured, sample PV modules are produced, and tested before repeating the preproduction run.” “These tests will provide the feedback necessary to move forward into full production of the BioBacksheet,” said Dr. Stanley Levy, BioSolar’s CTO,”We are extremely pleased with the progress so far, and we look forward to the successful transition into full scale production in the near future.” In a September report, and the October 10 edition of California Energy Circuit, Beacon Equity Research analyst Victor Sula noted that previous attempts to make solar backsheet with bioplastics failed due to the material’s “low melting temperature and fragile molecular structure.” He noted that BioSolar’s material has “overcome these constraints” with “durability characteristics similar to conventional petroleumbased plastics.” The recent activity reinforces BioSolar’s position at the forefront of providing advanced bio-based alternatives to the expensive petroleum-based backsheets currently in use, which have been actively sought by manufacturers as a component of solar panels. www.biosolar.com. PLA Bottles in US Capitol Hill Cafeteria Last year bioplastics MAGAZINE reported about Naturally Iowa from Clarinda, Iowa, USA to be the first dairy company that introduced PLA as a milk bottle material. Now, just recently a press conference on Capitol Hill (Washington DC, USA) heralded the arrival of Naturally Iowa’s newest product, ‘Green Bottle Spring Water.’ This new product will be the only bottled water available in the House Cafeteria, the Longworth Café. The Cafeteria has access to a well-developed industrial compost system developed by the United States Department of Agriculture. The composting material is sent daily to the facility in nearby Maryland to go from trash to topsoil in less than ninety days. This fits perfectly with Naturally Iowa’s criteria for placing their bottled water in ‘Closed Loop’ environments, where there is a plan to collect all empty bottles and return them to nature. In addition to composting, the bottles can be incinerated, or ground up and used again. The water for the Green Bottles is an underground source of natural spring water near Alton, Virginia, six hundred feet below a certified organic farm. After a nation-wide search, Naturally Iowa selected Grand Springs, and Mr. Robert Smith to be the strategic partner in this exciting project. While the House of Representatives is the first location for ‘Green Bottle Spring Water’, a large number of other government and non-government locations in the Washington DC area are working on their ‘closedloop’ strategies so that they can be added to the list of customers. Naturally Iowa’s recently announced ‘Yogurt in a Bottle 7.0’ is also packaged in NatureWorks, LLC’s Ingeo bottle, and will be available as an added beverage in the Green Bottle Spring Water locations. www.naturallyiowa.com Mark your calendar bioplastics MAGAZINE is planning the 2nd PLA Bottle Conference to be held during drinktec 2009 (mid September 2009) in Munich, Germany. A ‘Call for Papers’ is now open. Send your proposals to the editorial office. mt@bioplasticsmagazine.com www.pla-bottle-conference.com www.drinktec.com bioplastics MAGAZINE [06/08] Vol. 3

Marc Verbruggen New CEO of Natureworks News Marc Verbruggen is the new President and Chief Executive Officer of NatureWorks LLC, producers of Ingeo polylactide. He came to NatureWorks from Teijin subsidiary Toho Tenax America, where he served as president since 2004. Based in Rockwood, Tenn., the subsidiary makes carbon fiber for the industrial, automotive, aerospace and sporting goods markets. Prior to Toho Tenax America, he served as business manager, rubber goods, in Teijin Aramid in the Netherlands. Verbruggen, 48, holds masters and doctorate degrees in aerospace engineering from Delft University of Technology (Netherlands) and brings 20 years of marketing, sales and business leadership experience. In a short interview aside the 3rd European Bioplastics Conference bioplastics MAGAZINE spoke with Marc Verbruggen. bM: Mr. Verbruggen, what is your impression after your first 100 days at NatureWorks? MV: I’m really impressed with the amount of innovations we see with Ingeo. During my first 100 days I travelled a lot, especially in Asia, USA and Europe and all around the World you see a lot of small and large companies developing a wide variety of products based on Ingeo. And without having a plastics background, I did not expect such a wide spectrum from packaging through durables such as mobile phones to diapers and bottles. bM: And what are your plans for the next 365 days and the next five years? MV: 365 days is not a long time. One of the first that we got to do is get our capacity expansion up and running — get 140,000 tonnes Ingeo capacity on stream. This will be achieved by April/May next year. And then the next job is to sell it. We have been growing by 30-50% per year and if we keep doing that selling that capacity is not a big issue. But it takes a lot of effort to do it. And if you look at the growth rates of bioplastics in general, and Ingeo in particular, even five years is not really a long period of time. I think in five years from now we will have our second and maybe even a third plant up and running. We are starting to look for a location for a second plant. Europe is clearly a possibility as well as Asia or South America. And maybe even more important than that is to develop the whole infrastructure around bioplastics. That means the recycling has to be organized, industrial composting must become more available — there is already a growing awareness of this in Europe, but less so in other parts of the world. bM: Thank you very much Mr. Verbruggen. www.natureworksllc.com Guayaki Goes for Green Packaging Guayaki, (Gwy-uh-KEE), Sebastopol, California, USA was founded by Alex Pryor and David Karr in 1997. They saw a business opportunity in providing Yerba Mate as a tea-like alternative drink to coffee, as well as a way for consumers to support rainforest preservation. And they want to achieve the ‘greenest’ packaging possible for its Yerba Mate organic tea products. “We chose to transition our packaging to foil bags in order to use the most effective moisture and flavour barrier for maximising freshness,” says Steven Karr, Guayaki’s Creative Director. “We were delighted to find that NatureFlex from Innovia satisfies those specific technical needs as well as our green mission and ideals without significantly raising our packaging costs.” The final packaging structure for the product is made from metallised NatureFlex NM laminated to high gloss transparent NatureFlex NVS film. Modified coatings ensure excellent metal lay-down and adhesion providing a very high moisture barrier that keeps Guayaki’s Loose Yerba Mate products in premium condition. “We are proud to be raising the bar and trendsetting a new wave of green sustainable packaging with these products,” says Karr. “These products offer the energising health benefits of Guayaki Yerba Mate while also helping reduce the consumer’s personal carbon footprint, all in a biodegradable package,” adds Karr. www.guayaki.com www.innoviafilms.com bioplastics MAGAZINE [06/08] Vol. 3

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