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Basics regarded as

Basics regarded as trustworthy, and legislators will consequently be able to award them support. Also, reliable third party certification will be a necessary precondition for including the ‘bio-based content’ in systems for displaying the environmental parameters of products, such as packaging, in their labelling. When developing such certification, industry will want to strive for a common set of criteria, so that bio-based products will be defined in a consistent and transparent way, thus avoiding confusion or even doubts about the products and their qualities. Clearly, a situation should be avoided such as the one that evolved in the CO 2 (or carbon footprint) labelling – where a multitude of different programmes and labels only serve to confuse the public, and authorities cannot identify particular concepts worth supporting by way of legal instruments. The diversity of CO 2 labels also seems to undermine cooperation along the product value chain, as partners are not sure about which programme to choose. One consequence of such uncertainty is the loss of impact of these concepts, both at the (end) consumer and at the political level. So, one of the main goals for all parties interested in the concept of ‘biobased products’ should be open and reliable cooperation during development and implementation of the respective standards and certification system. Equally important, a close dialogue with the relevant authorities should be sought. Industry has come together for coordination and harmonization of bio-based certification Based on an initiative of the European Bioplastics association, some of the most relevant stakeholder groups in the field of bio-based products have established an ‘Industrial Task Force on Bio-based Content Certification’. This group aims at finding consensus on the conditions and criteria for such certification. Providing a well balanced and broadly agreed set of criteria will be a precondition for the communication of ‘bio-based products’ as an independent group of innovative products in the market place. The cooperation of industry and certifiers will provide trust and reliability in the certification, so that it can also be offered to the authorities as a fair and appropriate tool for defining this new product group within legal programmes - similar to the well-established compostability certification, which currently serves as a definition of particular, privileged products in, e.g., Belgian, Dutch and German legal provisions. Conclusion Whereas standards and certification systems for the determination and verification of biodegradability and compostability have been established and provide a proven track record of several years, the verification and tracing of the bio-based content, especially based on independent certification, has so far not been implemented. Dialogue between the core stakeholder groups will help to achieve harmonized criteria for such certification, so that certifiers throughout Europe and beyond can deliver their service to the users and can ensure that certification will best serve the products in the market place. Such coordinated certification systems could provide a reliable and strong basis for the consideration of bio-based products for national or multi-national legislation. Maria, our covergirl tries to use nature based cosmetics whenever she can afford it. “Now the cases and even the lipstick mechanics are made from nature based plastics too? Cool ! May I keep these?” 40 bioplastics MAGAZINE [02/09] Vol. 4

Events Event Calender April 15 , 2009 Biokunststoffe, (Bio)Kunststoff/Natur-Composites - Aufbereitung, Verarbeitung Seminar Kunststoff-Zentrum in Leipzig gGmbH Leipzig, Germany April 23 , 2009 Bioplastics Processing and Properties Loughborough University, UK September 14-16, 2009 2 nd PLA Bottle Conference hosted by bioplastics MAGAZINE within the framework of drinktec Munich / Germany May 21-22, 2009 3rd Bioplastics Market Grand Royal Hotel - Grand Ballroom / Guangzhou / China June 3-4, 2009 Bioplastic Asia 2009 at 5-star hotel in Bangkok, Thailand June 22-26, 2009 NPE2009: The International Plastics Showcase McCormick Place Chicago, Illinois USA September 9-10, 2009 7th Int. Symposium „Materials made of Renewable Resources“ Messe Erfurt Erfurt / Germany September 28-30, 2009 Biopolymers Symposium 2009 Embassy Suites, Lakefront - Chicago Downtown Chicago, Illinois USA October 26-27, 2009 Biowerkstoff Kongress 2009 ithin framework of AVK and COMPOSITES EUROPE Neue Messe Stuttgart, Germany November 10-11, 2009 4th European Bioplastics Conference Ritz Carlton Hotel, Berlin, Germany December 2-3, 2009 Dritter Deutscher WPC-Kongress Maritim Hotel, Cologne, Germany You can meet us! Please contact us in advance by e-mail. bioplastics MAGAZINE [02/09] Vol. 4 41

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