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Issue 04/2018

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bioplasticsMAGAZINE_1804

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News daily upated news at www.bioplasticsmagazine.com Biocomposite demand driven by global construction boom, says new report The vendor landscape for the global market for biocomposites has seen a significant rise in the number of manufacturers, leading to intense competition, writes Transparency Market Research in a recent report. As the market witnesses the entry of numerous wellestablished manufacturers of popular composites such as glass fiber and cotton fiber, the market is expected to become more competitive in the near future. Despite this, the market features a vast set of untapped growth opportunities in new applications across industries such as construction and automotive. Tapping these growth opportunities may require strategic collaborations with companies in emerging economies and expansion of manufacturing capabilities to effectively serve the rising demand. Some of the leading companies operating in the global biocomposites market are Tecnaro, UPM, FlexForm Technologies, Green Bay Decking, Universal Forest Products, and Jelu-Werk. According to the report, the global biocomposites market will exhibit an impressive 9.46% CAGR over the period between 2017 and 2025, rising from a valuation of US,730.4 mn in 2016 to US,549.4 mn by 2025. Of the key materials used to manufacture biocomposites, wood presently accounts for a dominant share in the overall market, thanks to its excellent binding properties and easy availability. The segment of flax is expected to expand at the fastest pace over the forecast period, accounting for a notable share in the overall market by the end of the report’s forecast. From the geographical standpoint, the market in Asia Pacific is presently the leading contributor of revenue to the global biocomposites market, thanks to the rapid pace of industrialization in emerging economies. The region is also a key market for biocomposites owing to the massive demand across industries such as consumer goods, construction, and automotive. The key factors working in favor of the global biocomposites market include stringent government regulations advocating the increased use of environment-friendly products with the view of reducing the negative impacts of rising pollution on the health of environment and global warming. The recyclable nature of biocomposites, coupled with their much higher safety quotient as compared to materials such as glass fibers and carbon fiber when it comes to a number of applications, could also spell growth for the market. The easy availability of most raw materials required for the production of a variety of biocomposites across the globe is also a key factors expected to work well for the expansion of the global biocomposites market over the next few years. However, certain limitations concerning pure biocomposites in aspects such as mechanical strength, coupled with their unstable costs and fluctuating availability of raw materials could cost the market negatively to a certain degree over the forecast period. MT tinyurl.com/biocomposites-17-25 Corbion CEO Tjerk de Ruiter appointed as new EuropaBio Chairman EuropaBio, the European Association for Bioindustries, has released a statement announcing that its Executive Board and General Assembly of Members this week confirmed the appointment of Tjerk de Ruiter as Chairman of the association. De Ruiter is CEO of Dutch industrial biotech innovator Corbion, a global market leader in lactic acid, lactic acid derivatives, and a leading company in emulsifiers, functional enzyme blends, minerals, vitamins and algae ingredients. Commenting on his appointment, De Ruiter said: “I am thrilled to become EuropaBio’s new Chairman at a time when our sector has a great story to tell about the solutions it can provide in response to some of the bigger questions people and planet are facing today.” EuropaBio, he added, is uniquely positioned to promote more knowledge about biotech innovation in Europe and to share the enthusiasm of biotech innovators, researchers and entrepreneurs with the wider public. “In light of next year’s European elections, one of our first priorities will be to ensure policymakers understand that Europe's biotech is globally leading with the innovative solutions the sector provides and that ensuring the right framework for its growth is key for Europe’s future.” De Ruiter’s mandate as Chairman is not remunerated and runs until 2020.. MT www.europabio.org 6 bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/18] Vol. 13

News Bioplastic from frying oil Used frying oil is a hazardous waste, available in large quantities around the world. If it can be used to make polyhydroxybutyrate (PHB) instead of having to be treated as waste, the environment benefits. Save the date see page 10-11 for details Professor Pavel Alexy of the STU Faculty of Chemical and Food Technology in Bratislava is currently collaborating intensively with the scientists of the Technical University of Brno and a commercial company, developing the technology for processing waste oils to secondgeneration polyhydroxybutyrate. The STU team is collaborating with a number of companies and universities on the practical application of the material. Among the commercial uses under consideration are plastic containers, cutlery, packaging foils and mulch foils. And together with a design agency called the crafting plastics! studio, the STU chemical engineers have come up with an idea of using bioplastics for sunglasses frames; their design won the 2017 National Design Award in the category of Value-added Design. It was also nominated for the German Design Award and currently is exhibited at the Venice Biennale of Design and Architecture. The young designers managed to get support for the project through the Kickstarter.com. crowdfunding portal. Medical applications also present new opportunities. The STU is currently collaborating with specialists at the Comenius University Faculty of Medicine in Bratislava and the top experts in implants development at the Technical University in Košice. Bioplastics may serve as temporary implants supporting complicated fractures. Research is also being carried out in the field of tissue engineering; in the laboratories, complete substitute organs are grown on a bio-substrate that will gradually decompose. MT Elephant grass is new local feedstock for bioplastics Although indigenous to the sub-tropic, Miscanthus Giganteus, or elephant grass, as it is more commonly known, has put down roots in Europe as well. In the Netherlands, it has been planted around the country’s major airport, Schiphol, to keep the geese away. A start-up company is now a making bioplastic called Vibers from it. According to Jan-Govert van Gilst elephant grass contains "‘the same energy value as coal and lots of cellulose fibers", making it suitable as an alternative resource to produce various materials. An idealist who is set on eliminating fossil-based plastic packaging, he saw potential in the crop and founded his company, NNRGY, in Honselersdijk, the Netherlands. Elephant grass is a fast-growing crop, which absorbs four times as much CO 2 as a forest. It requires neither the use of pesticides or fertilizer to thrive and is not invasive. NNRGY developed a biodegradable, compostable bioplastic called Vibers that is made from elephant grass and residual product from the potato processing industry. In 2017, a new film was successfully developed for the packaging industry. It is thermoformable on existing machinery and at low temperatures, which saves energy. It can be processed as biodegradable waste. The seedling logo has been applied for, however, the testing process is still ongoing. MT www.vibers.nl tinyurl.com/fryingoil2phb Avantium opened pilot biorefinery Avantium; Amsterdam, The Netherlands officially opened a pilot biorefinery for its Zambezi technology in Delfzijl, Netherlands. The opening ceremonies took place in Amsterdam on 10 July and in Delfzijl on 13 July. The Delfzijl plant will pilot Avantium’s latest technology to convert plant-based non-food feedstock to high purity industrial sugars and lignin. The industrial sugars are used in chemistry and fermentation processes to produce a broad range of durable materials, while lignin is used in energy generation. Tom van Aken, Chief Executive Officer of Avantium, called the opening ‘a milestone in our work to support the transition to a circular economy’. “We are already looking beyond the pilot phase. We have a consortium of partners committed to developing a commercial-scale plant,” he said. Avantium previously announced it had founded a consortium to develop an ecosystem for the biorefinery technology. The consortium consists of AkzoNobel, RWE, Staatsbosbeheer and Chemport Europe, an incubator for green chemistry. Each brings specific expertise for the planned commercial-scale biorefinery. Gert-Jan Gruter, Chief Technology Officer of Avantium, said that “glucose is a core building block for the transition towards a bio-based economy”. He noted that all materials made from petroleum today can be replaced by with materials derived from glucose. Patrick Brouns, regional minister of the province of Groningen, is pleased to welcome Avantium to Delfzijl, and the “innovation, green chemistry and highly skilled jobs” the company is bringing to the region, which fit well with the existing local chemistry, energy and agricultural sectors and knowledge institutions. “With Chemport Europe, we also support the future commercial-scale biorefinery in Delfzijl, ” he said. MT www.avantium.com bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/18] Vol. 13 7

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