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Issue 01/2018

  • Text
  • Bioplastics
  • Biobased
  • Materials
  • Plastics
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  • Automotive
  • Thailand
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  • Germany
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bioplasticsMAGAZINE_1801

Thailand advantages, the

Thailand advantages, the price of these resins is usually prohibitive. Many brand owners cannot afford to change - and converters of conventional plastics tend not to suggest to their customers to make the change to bioplastics. As Global Biopolymers is located in the vicinity of the two resin makers, transport and processing advantages are potentially available, as to a certain extent, material and production cost savings are realized. Additional cost savings are achieved by the company’s expertise in compounding bioplastics with natural raw materials. Thus, downstream converters and brand owners can change to bioplastics at economical costs. Two natural raw materials used are tapioca starch and natural rubber. Both raw materials are biobased (renewable) and biodegradable. Tapioca starch is obtained from cassava roots. The roots are crushed to produce tapioca starch, which is mainly used in the paper and textile industries. Tapioca starch is non-GMO and is domestically available at low prices. Natural rubber is the milky latex obtained through the tapping of rubber tree (Hevea brasiliensis). Thailand is the world’s biggest rubber producer, accounting for 30 % of total global production. Natural rubber is also a low priced commodity and non-GMO. Both cassava tapioca starch and natural rubber can be compounded with bioplastics. The compounds exhibit functional properties similar to those of comparable conventional plastics. The compounds have the same degree Root trainers for rubber trees of biodegradability and biobased content as neat bioplastics, but at lower cost. In some instance, the additives ease the processing on conventional plastic machines. The converters are more receptive to using bioplastics compounds than neat resins. Thailand also offers an abundance of cellulosic materials from agricultural waste, such as wood sawdust, jute or pineapple leaves, all of which are available at minimal cost. They can be compounded with biobased and biodegradable plastics, forming new composites that are both biobased and biodegradable. The end products are a type of biobased wood plastic composites (WPC). Summary Thailand is aiming to become the Bioplastics Hub of Asia. The country has abundant feedstocks for the production of bioplastics. Two prominent bioplastics resins - PLA and PBS - are now being produced in Thailand. The local plastics converting industry has strong potential to diversify into bioplastics. The bioplastics compounding industry will be the key player in the integration of the supply chain. As a completely integrated bioplastics hub, Thailand can deliver bioplastics to the world, efficiently and at competitive prices compared to conventional plastics. Thailand’s government recognizes that in order to reach its goal, the country will need to develop its innovative strength and new technologies. To that end, the government has initiated a special incentives scheme to attract investments in bioplastics. www.globalbiopolymers.com www.co2-chemistry.eu Leading Event on Carbon Capture and Utilisation 15 – 16 March 2018, Cologne (Germany) Conference Team Jutta Millich Media & Partnerships +49 (0)0561 503580-44 jutta.millich@nova-institut.de Dr. Asta Partanen Sponsoring +49 (0)2233 4814-59 asta.partanen@nova-institut.de Achim Raschka Programme +49 (0)2233 4814-51 achim.raschka@nova-institut.de Conference highlights and main topics • CO 2 for platform chemicals and polymers • CO 2 for future fuels • CO 2 capture and new technologies • Sustainability & climate change mitigation potential • Key drivers: renewable energy & hydrogen production • Political framework & visions Newsticker on Carbon Capture and Utilisation! Free access: www.co2-chemistry.eu/news www.co2-chemistry.eu Dominik Vogt Conference Manager +49 (0)2233 4814-49 dominik.vogt@nova-institut.de Venue Maternushaus Kardinal-Frings-Str. 1 50668 Cologne www.maternushaus.de Organiser nova-Institut GmbH Chemiepark Knapsack Industriestraße 300 50354 Hürth, Germany 38 bioplastics MAGAZINE [01/18] Vol. 13

Report Bio-PBS from Thailand A shared vision of driving the industry forward in an environmentally friendly way, led in March 2011 to the founding of a joint venture between Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation (MCC), Japan’s largest petrochemical company and PTT Public Company ltd (PTT), the biggest energy company in Thailand. The new company became the world’s first BioPBS plant, and operated under the name PTTMCC Biochem Co. Ltd. In July of last year, PTT transferred its 50 % stake in the company to its subsidiary, PTT Global Chemical Plc. (PTTGC). This transfer of its shares to downstream activities is expected to broaden PTTMCC’s bioplastics reach, thanks to its close collaboration with PTTGC in the area of Research & Development facility, and PTTGC’s expertise in bioplastics. Indeed, PTTGC is also a major shareholder of NatureWorks LLC, a leading global biopolymers supplier and PLA pioneer; hence synergies with the BioPBS product line may be looked forward to. The other shareholder, MCC, holds internationally recognized patents for the production of high- quality biopolyesters based on monomers produced from biomass. MCC’s extensive web of distribution and networking channels worldwide provide PTTMCC with access to markets in Europe, Americas, and Asia. BioPBS plant / Renewable and naturally compostable PTTMCC has played an important role in the push towards commercial scale in the biopolymer industry: the company operates the world’s only bio-based polybutylene succinate (BioPBS) plant, with an annual capacity of 20,000 tons, in Rayong, Thailand. PTTMCC produces BioPBS using technology it exclusively licenses from Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation. BioPBS is derived from natural resources, such as sugarcane, cassava, and corn, and is compostable into biomass, carbon dioxide and water. Products made from BioPBS can be disposed of along with organic waste. These have no adverse effects on the environment and are naturally compostable, with no specialized composting facility or high temperature composting facility required. BioPBS production / Raw materials BioPBS is currently produced through the polymerization of two main raw materials, bio-succinic acid and 1,4-butanediol, both of which are imported from overseas suppliers. In line with government strategy to accelerate the Thai economy, PTTMCC aims to start using domestic feedstock as well to achieve 100 % bio-based content in the near future. This would contribute significantly to Thailand’s economy and the world of bioplastics Applications BioPBS is recognized for being a fast degradable biopolymer, with existing certified Home Compostable grades. However, it is also a versatile solution for modifying PLA, making it possible to develop high-end compounds for more durable applications. BioPBS is now used mostly in the Food & Packaging industry, for applications ranging from paper coating, barrier packaging and coffee capsules to synthetic fibers, cutlery & tableware and rigid packaging. PTTMCC is committed to continue working with all stakeholders, researchers, converters, brand owners and distributors worldwide to introduce state-of-the art products, while developing new applications to meet the current and future needs of people and society. MT www.pttmcc.com bioplastics MAGAZINE [01/18] Vol. 13 39

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