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News Biobased PBS on

News Biobased PBS on commercial scale Showa Denko K.K. (SDK), at its Tatsuno Plant in Hyogo Prefecture, Japan, has succeeded in producing Bionolle TM , a biodegradable aliphatic polyester on a commercial scale using bio-derived succinic acid. SDK has started providing film-grade samples of this product. Bionolle comprises PBS, Polybutylene Succinate and PBSA, Polybutylene Succinate Adipate grades, which can be fully decomposed after use into water and carbon dioxide and have been used in compost bags and mulch films. To reduce CO 2 emissions, SDK has worked to use bio-derived raw materials. Specifically, SDK has developed the volume production technology for Bionolle that uses succinic acid made from starches or sugars. This means that about 50% of main raw materials for Bionolle are now bio-derived. As for Bionolle Starcla TM , in which starch is mixed with Bionolle, the ratio can be increased to about 70%. Both of Bionolle and Bionolle Starcla have been certified compostable by OK Compost and DIN CERTCO according to EN13432. The product is being test-marketed to some customers, including Natur-Tec ® , a division of Northern Technologies International Corp., Circle Pines, Minnesota, USA. The company is already using conventional grades of Bionolle for certain high-volume consumer goods packaging applications developed by Harita-NTI Ltd, its jointventure in India. Vineet Dalal, Vice President and Director of Global Market Development for NTIC’s Natur-Tec Business Unit, said, “Our customers are increasingly demanding higher biobased carbon content in our materials, in order to reduce the overall carbon footprint of their finished products. We are excited at the possibility of incorporating SDK’s bio-derived Bionolle into our compounds and converted plastic products, to meet this burgeoning market demand.” In view of the increasing international awareness of the need for environmental protection, SDK aims to expand the sales of Bionolle biodegradable plastic based on bioderived raw materials. By the end of this year, SDK will be able to secure the supply of 10,000-20,000 tons a year of bio-derived succinic acid. The company will therefore step up its activity to meet new demand. MT Successful partnership between Tecnaro and Braskem Tecnaro GmbH, Ilsfeld-Auenstein, Germany closed a contract in 2011 with Braskem from Brazil. Tecnaro produces compounds with sugar cane based Green PE from Braskem in a special product line of the material family ARBOBLEND ® . The biopolymer compounds include grades for injection molding, (film) extrusion, thermoforming, melt spinning, etc. “Objective of the cooperation is the development of new applications in order to increase the product portfolio made from Green PE” says Claudia Cappra, Commercial Manager of Braskem. Tecnaro was selected by Braskem to increase the penetration of customized compound solutions based on Green PE in the European market. “We are pleased to cooperate with Braskem and hereby realize an important step in the further exploration of the Brazilian and German market”, says Dr. Lars Ziegler, Director R&D of Tecnaro. Once again, this cooperation shows the long-term relation of Tecnaro with Brazil. The German company keeps a sales representation in Sao Paulo since 2001. In 2005 a comprehensive training program was introduced focusing on the utilization of renewable resources in the plastics industry. This was elaborated and implemented by Tecnaro within Private Public Partnership (PPP) Projects supported by BMZ/Sequa gGmbH and in cooperation with the Brazilian center for research and education SENAI CIMATEC and other partners. In addition, new biomaterials have been developed and the awareness regarding bioplastics has been increased in Brazil. MT 6 bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/12] Vol. 7

News 3% 1% 0% 3% 4% 4% 7% 7% 14% 46% 7% 55% 2% 4% 26% 8% 45% Polylactic Acid Starch-Based Cellulose Bio-Based Polyethylene 29% 2006 20% 2011 3% 12% 2016 Bio-Based Polyamides Degradable Polyesters Other US Demand for Bioplastics US demand for bioplastics is forecast to climb at a 20% annual pace through 2016 to 250,000 tonnes, valued at 0 million, as Freedonia, a Cleveland, Ohio, USA based business research company published in a new study titled ‘Bioplastics’. Although they have achieved a considerable degree of commercial success, bioplastics remain in an early stage of development, representing only a small niche within the overall plastics industry. Going forward, technical innovations that enhance the properties of bioplastics and lower their price will drive growth. Today biodegradable resins still account for the vast majority of bioplastics volume (2011). However, Freedonia foresees the emergence of non-biodegradable bioresins to dramatically alter the market landscape going forward. Over the next decade, these materials will rise to more than two-fifths of volume demand, up from 13% in 2011. Growth will be propelled by large-volume production of bio-based polyethylene, as well as the eventual commercialization of bio-based polyethylene terephthalate (PET), polypropylene, and polyvinyl chloride (PVC). Since these resins are chemically identical to their conventional counterparts, market acceptance is forecast to occur at a rapid rate. Among these bio-based plastics, PET is projected to offer significant growth potential over the longer term, particularly as large corporations are investing heavily in the development of this material (see also p. 5 in this issue of bioplastics MAGAZINE). Polylactic acid (PLA) is expected to remain the most extensively used resin in the bioplastics market through the forecast period. Advances will be promoted by a widening composting network, advances in terms of recycling of PLA and greater processor familiarity, as well as ongoing efforts to diversify PLA feedstocks. Bio-based polyethylene - which entered the market in 2010 - is expected to offer the best opportunities for growth through 2016, increasing rapidly from a small base. These exceptionally strong gains are predicated on the expansion of production capacity, which will reduce prices and enable this resin to compete more effectively with its petroleum-based counterpart. MT Source: The Freedonia Group, Inc. (Cleveland, OH). The study is available via the bioplastics MAGAZINE bookstore for US$ 4900. © bioplastics MAGAZINE, source: Freedonia Shaping the future of biobased plastics bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/12] Vol. 7 7

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