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issue 04/2021

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  • Toys
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Highlights: Toys Thermoforming Basics: Bio-Polypropylene

News daily updated News

News daily updated News at Natureworks' milestones for PLA plant in Thailand NatureWorks (Minnetonka, Minnesota, USA) announced in early June the completion of key milestones in their global manufacturing expansion plan for a new fully integrated Ingeo️ PLA production facility that is anticipated to open in Thailand by 2024, subject to shareholder approval. When fully operational the new plant will have an annual capacity of 75,000 tonnes of PLA and will produce the full portfolio of Ingeo grades. The manufacturing project will be located at the Nakhon Sawan Biocomplex (NBC) in Nakhon Sawan province. The NBC is the first biocomplex project in Thailand established in accordance with theThai government's bioeconomy policy. NatureWorks recently completed the front-end engineering design work with Jacobs (Dallas, Texas). Jacobs was selected and managed in partnership with IAG (Houston, Texas), who provided front-end project management and project controls. Final detailed engineering is currently underway, and NatureWorks expects to announce further details on the new facility later this year. “We are pleased to share these significant accomplishments as part of our next phase for global manufacturing expansion,” said Rich Altice, President and CEO of NatureWorks. “The approval and support from the Thailand Board of Investment was a critical milestone on our path toward opening our new facility in Thailand. With both the recently announced capacity expansion at our facility in Blair, Nebraska and this new manufacturing complex, we can further address the global market demand for sustainable materials and continue leading the development of high-performance applications that capitalize on Ingeo’s unique material properties.” The new manufacturing complex will include production for lactic acid, lactide, and polymer making it the world’s first polylactide facility designed to be fully integrated. NatureWorks will build and operate all three facilities, having both process and energy integration to increase the efficiency of the manufacturing operation dedicated to Ingeo biopolymer production. MT Swiss Bioplastics looking for new operator Some years ago Richard Bisig founded with his son the company Swiss Bioplastics GmbH, the son being a pharmacist and Richard a consultant. Their aim was to create a beverage bottle made of 100 % biobased material. Unfortunately, they were not successful in finding such a material in Europe and therefore they decided to no longer operate the company. They are now looking for interested people, who want to operate in the field of bioplastics using the name Swiss Bioplastics. If you are interested to get in touch with Richard Bisig, please contact the editor. MT Capacity expansion at Futamura Futamura (Wigton, UK) has announced investment plans for an additional casting machine to expand capacity in their thriving cellulose films business. The investment plans come as Futamura celebrates its fiveyear anniversary since acquiring the cellulose films business in July 2016. Futamura has enjoyed year-on-year sales growth, due to rising demand for their renewable and compostable NatureFlex films. Andy Sweetman, Sales & Marketing Director EMEA said: “Consumer demand for sustainable packaging has driven a steady increase in sales for us. As the market demand grows, so do we. The new casting machine will allow us to better serve our customers by reducing lead times and increasing overall capacity.” The machine build will commence in Q3 of this year. At the successful close of their first five-year plan, Futamura looks ahead to the next five years with the appointment of Adrian Cave as Managing Director, from 1 st July 2021. Adrian is currently Finance Director for Futamura EMEA and takes the reins from exiting Managing Director, Graeme Coulthard, who begins his retirement at the end of June. Adrian said, “It is an honour to have been appointed Managing Director and I will be proud to lead an experienced, passionate, and dedicated Futamura UK and Europe team. I would like to thank Graeme for all that he has done for the company, he leaves behind a strong legacy. The growth we have seen over the past five years is set to continue and we look forward to further investments in equipment, as well as advancing our exciting R&D projects.”MT 6 bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/21] Vol. 16

Green Dot Bioplastics plant expansion Green Dot Bioplastics held a groundbreaking ceremony in early June, celebrating the start of construction on its expansion project at the Green Dot facility in Onaga, Kansas, USA. Green Dot is known for creating the world's first biodegradable elastomeric rubber, Terratek Flex, as well as a variety of other biocomposites and biodegradable resins to replace traditional plastics. Located in the heart of the scenic Kansas Flint Hills, the company's mission to create a new generation of plastic supports a biobased economy. As Green Dot enters its second decade, the company is preparing to introduce two new product categories for use in compostable packaging applications, including film. The expansion to the Onaga facility, adds floor space to accommodate additional equipment and warehouse space in order to double production capacity. The project is being led by KBS Constructors, leaders in critical environment construction, and is expected to be completed in September 2021. People who symbolically broke ground include Green Dot CEO Mark Remmert, Director of Research & Development Mike Parker, Engineering Manager Amanda Childress, Plant Manager Bill Barnell, and Dan Foltz, President of KBS Constructors. Lydia Kincade, co-founder of iiM, and Dave Nelson represented Green Dot's Board of Directors and investors, respectively. "Green Dot has enjoyed exceptional growth during our first decade and we are poised for even bigger things in our next decade," Remmert said. "This expansion comes in advance of adding two new product categories to our portfolio of sustainable plastics and effectively doubles our production capacity. It's an exciting time to be in bioplastics!" The project aligns with Green Dot's values of sustainability and innovation. Partnering with KBS Constructors, another Kansas-based firm committed to the same values, means the expansion not only benefits Green Dot, but it also has a positive impact on the local economy. "We wanted to work with a local company who understands our needs and the needs of the Onaga community. Dan Foltz and his talented team at KBS are absolutely the right people for this job," Remmert said. "We are excited to put our 30+ years of experience to work on this expansion project," Foltz said. "This is a great example of innovation flourishing in rural Kansas and we are thrilled to be a part of it." Production at the facility will continue during construction with expanded capacity coming online in fall 2021. MT News daily updated News at Kimberly-Clark partners with RWDC In pursuit of its 2030 ambition to reduce the use of fossil fuel-based plastics by half before the end of the decade, Kimberly-Clark (Dallas, Texas) announced a partnership with RWDC Industries to advance sustainable technology for consumer products that provides much-needed solutions to the world's single-use plastics problem. The collaboration brings together Kimberly-Clark's deep experience in nonwoven technologies and resin development with RDWC's innovative and cost-effective biopolymer solutions. The partnership will provide Kimberly-Clark with RWDC's polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA) source material, Solon TM , to develop additional products that are marine degradable. "We've seen the growing demand from consumers and governments for companies to provide more sustainable solutions to single-use plastics," said Liz Metz, Vice President of Kimberly-Clark's Global Nonwovens business. "Solving for these challenges will take game-changing innovation as well as collaboration with industry-leading partners like RWDC to help speed these new materials to market." The company is working to launch products featuring this innovation over the next five years, focusing first on product categories that address global demand for more sustainable products. "We're thrilled to partner with Kimberly-Clark and play an important role in the future development of its essential products," said Daniel Carraway, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of RWDC. "This partnership showcases how industry leaders can leverage the agility of emerging technologies to deliver real change. Together, we are demonstrating that we can alter the alarming growth trajectory of plastic waste while retaining quality and enabling environmental goals to be met." RWDC, based in Athens, Georgia, USA and Singapore, combines deep expertise in PHA properties and applications with the engineering know-how to reach cost-effective industrial scale. RWDC uses plant-based oils to produce its proprietary PHA, which can be composted in home and industrial composting facilities. Should products or packaging made with PHA find their way into the environment, they biodegrade in soil, freshwater, and marine settings, preventing persistent plastics from accumulating in the environment. MT | bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/21] Vol. 16 7

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