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Issue 06/2022

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Application News Green

Application News Green Dot Bioplastics achieves a compostable living hinge Green Dot Bioplastics (Emporia, KS, USA), a leading developer and supplier of bioplastic materials for innovative, sustainable end-uses, recently announced a compostable living hinge. Creating fully-compostable packaging has stymied developers because of one component: the living hinge. Living hinges are a type of hinge made from an extension of the parent material, acting as a connection between two larger plastic sections, such as on a shampoo bottle. Typically the larger plastic pieces and the living hinge are made of one continuous piece of plastic. Because a living hinge must be very thin, flexible, and withstand repeated usage without breaking, typically manufacturers have used polypropylene to create the entire unit. Until now. Green Dot is proud to announce that the new, expanded Terratek ® BD line includes materials with the same malleability and durability as materials traditionally used to manufacture living hinges. Two new injection moulding grades deliver higher heat performance and enhanced processability (lower cycle times) for caps/closures, food service ware, and takeout containers with a higher rate of biodegradability and the functional performance that the market demands. Biodegradable Terratek BD materials are a line of rigid, compostable materials that are created from a proprietary blend of starch-based ingredients and other polymers. “During the application development process, we worked with a customer to commercially develop a living hinge for an injection moulded package”, said Mike Parker, Director of Research & Development, at Green Dot Bioplastics. “It was highly successful, resulting in a package made entirely from Terratek BD compostable resins. Developing a solution to the living hinge challenge opens a lot of doors for sustainable packaging”. The injection moulding grades are currently undergoing certification by TUV Austria. MT World’s first plant-based medical grade face mask authorized under EUA by US FDA PADM Medical Group of Companies (PADM Medical Canada and PADM Medical USA), a global leader in the design and development of sustainable medical consumables and eco-friendly sustainable medical products, recently announced that it has received its Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to market Precision Eco, the world’s first plant-based, procedural mask with ear loops for use in healthcare and medical settings in the United States of America. Billions of petroleum-based, synthetic disposable surgical masks are discarded globally on an annual basis. Increasingly, governments and consumers are recognizing the environmental threats posed worldwide by plastic pollution. Most disposable Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) consists of petroleum-based, non-biodegradable polymers that can take up to 450 years to decompose in our landfills, rivers, lakes, and other natural environments. PADM Medical’s Precision Eco plant-based procedural masks, made using ECOFUSE plant-based materials manufactured by Roswell Textiles (Calgary, AB, Canada) from renewable crop resources, will help reduce the adverse impact on the environment of petroleum-based, single-use disposable face masks. The Ecofuse materials are industrially compostable and by being plantbased, help reduce the CO 2 emissions of Precision Eco by approximately 55 % compared to conventional petroleum-based masks. Precision Eco procedural masks generate carbon credits as a result of the net carbon reduction. Additionally, the Precision Eco compostable/plant-based procedural mask with earloops is a USDA Certified Biobased product under the USDA BioPreferred Program with a biobased content of 82 %. Derek Atkinson, VP of Business Development at TotalEnergies Corbion (Gorinchem, the Netherlands) said: “We should not accept the limitations of the current way of doing things as being the only way. As we try to minimize the impact of our products on the environment, it is these developments that help us realize these ambitions”. He continued, “as the supplier to PADM Medical Group of the high purity polylactic acid Luminy ® PLA needed in the production of these groundbreaking biobased surgical masks, we are delighted to learn that PADM has succeeded in obtaining Emergency Use Authorization from the US FDA”. AT | 52 bioplastics MAGAZINE [06/22] Vol. 17

Mass balancing towards a Circular Economy Basics Growing awareness around environmental and ethical issues continues to drive demand and need for more sustainable practices and products. In order for companies to be able to prove sustainability claims, a robust chain of custody process is necessary for credibility and compliance with new regulations, such as the (European) Renewable Energy Directive (RED II) and the EU Packaging Levy. The mass balance approach provides the most promising approach for the chemicals and plastics industry to incrementally transition to using sustainable feedstocks, without the need to set up separate production lines for sustainable products. Allowing for sustainable, biobased materials to be mixed with fossil-based materials, companies are able to state sustainability claims such as “made with recycled plastic” on products. For credibility, this approach requires the strict tracking of the exact mass of sustainable content flowing through the supply chain system and ensuring an appropriate allocation of this content to the finished product. Certification schemes for mass balance approaches vary, with differences in their method of accounting for the balance of material, energy, and carbon use relating to specific targeted industry segments or governance requirements for sustainability criteria reporting. • Better Biomass (previously NEN) • Ecoloop • EU Standards: Material Balance Standard for Bio-Based Products • EUCertPlast • ISCC PLUS • REDcert2 • RSB Advanced Products • RSPO • UL 2809 However, mass balance bookkeeping and reporting is a complex and expensive process to do manually, limiting the scalability of mass balancing for businesses. Certification systems currently rely on pdfs and paper for maintaining an audit trail. This creates a significant administrative burden with a high risk of human error which can lead to double counting or premature allocation of sustainability credits. This can, in turn, lead to the loss of your certification, and even worse, losing the trust of your customers. While some large organisations have built their own mass balancing systems to solve their bookkeeping needs, not every company can undertake this difficult and costly endeavour. You can still have accurate and scalable bookkeeping to prove sustainability claims with MassBalancer, an automated solution for mass balance bookkeeping that is able to accommodate complex, multi-tiered supply chains. It can manage multiple sites and units in one place, and can be used by anyone along the supply value chain in the plastics and petrochemicals industry. “Blockchain technology is revolutionising how data is stored and shared. Now companies don’t need to individually keep a balance of goods and transactions in excel. Instead, they can use blockchain and smart contracts to store balances, record transactions, and apply mass balance rules. Every transaction is fully traceable. Auditors can therefore rely on the blockchain for parts of the audit”, said Mesbah Sabur, Circularise’s Founder. Traceability in the chain of custody plays a critical role in the transition towards a circular economy. Setting up the bookkeeping system and auditing process can make or break this initiative within companies. When done effectively, it can generate more value for the business and act as a means of sustainable transformation. Automating mass balance bookkeeping is a simple, scalable solution that helps you save time, money, and resources. Where to start with implementing a mass balance approach? 1. Firstly you need to be sure mass balance is the chain of custody model that is best for your market and your business operations. 2. Next select a certification scheme that best suits your business, considering the benefits, market demand, scalability, and standards that will need to be met. 3. Outline a plan or MVP for a system which will allow your company to maintain reliable bookkeeping for the certification you have selected. 4. Find a certification body that will conduct the auditing for the certification of your site(s) and product(s). 5. Outline a practical timeline for implementation, considering the operational change and auditing steps required. By: Tian Daphne and Igor Konstantinov Circularise The Hague, Netherlands bioplastics MAGAZINE [06/22] Vol. 17 53

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