5-hydroxymethylfurfural (CAS 67-47-0) is an organic compound derived from sugar dehydration. It is a platform chemical, a building block for 20 performance polymers and over 175 different chemical substances. The molecule consists of a furan ring which contains both aldehyde and alcohol functional groups. 5-HMF has applications in many different industries such as bioplastics, packaging, pharmaceuticals,  adhesives and chemicals. One of the most promising routes is 2,5 furandicarboxylic acid (FDCA), produced as an intermediate when 5-HMF is oxidised. FDCA is used to produce PEF, which can substitute terephthalic acid in polyester, especially polyethylene terephthalate (PET). (see bM 03/2014)