Issue 06/12 (Nov/Dec) features the two editorial highlights: "Films / Flexibles / Bags" and "Electronics"(among other topics). The basics section will have closer look at "Blown Film Extrusion". Order your copy
The past decade has witnessed explosive growth in bioplastics with new product announcements occurring on a weekly basis. Biobased compositions based on starch or resins such as polylactic acid (PLA) have achieved significant penetration in the non-durable goods market. However, stringent product requirements have slowed the adoption of biobased plastics for the electronics industry.
The Biopolymers Symposium 2012 by Smithers-Rapra was held on 16-17 October in San Antonio, Texas, USA. The day before the conference, the delegates had the chance to participate in a special ‘anaerobic digestion forum’. This new half day event explored the role that AD could play including policy initiatives, feedstock supply etc. The forum was held by key stakeholders and US government adopters.
McCullagh Coffee, a US coffee roasting company (Buffalo, New York), has introduced a compostable pack, for its Rainforest Alliance Certified Ecoverde Coffee brand, using NatureFlex™ from Innovia Films. The cellulose-based films are certified to meet ASTM D6400, EN13432 and Australian AS4736 standards for compostable packaging.
The use of carbon dioxide to produce chemical materials of various types using biotechnical processes is at present being actively researched and further developed, and the potential end products even include plastics (cf. bM 05/2012).
Again we saw a late summer and autumn with a lot of events. Besides innovations in materials, applications or end-of-life solutions, legal issues such as a ban on plastic shopping bags, waste directives or the TFC green guides, were much-discussed topics at most of these conferences and symposiums. Among other things we report about both the innovations and the legal discussions in this, our last issue of 2012.
A new design of ‘Bio-enclosure’ has been announced by OKW for housing electronic controls. Used in diagnosis, therapy, measuring and control engineering, peripheral, interface equipment, and in the house, the list of enclosure or housing applications in the field of electronics for using all kinds of bioplastics could be continued endlessly.
An above-average positive development in bioplastics production capacity has made past projections obsolete. The market of around 1.2 million tonnes in 2011 will see a fivefold increase in production volumes by 2016 – to an anticipated almost 6 million tonnes. This is the result of the current market forecast, which the industry association European Bioplastics published in mid October in cooperation with the IfBB Institute for Bioplastics and Biocomposites from the University of Hannover.
The new Nike GS football boot is the lightest, fastest, most environmentally-friendly production boot the company has ever made. It is constructed using renewable and recycled materials, designed for explosive performance on the pitch and lower impact on the planet. Every component has been optimized to reduce weight and waste, creating Nike’s lightest football boot ever at 160 grams (size 9).
The U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) recently issued new Green Guides, on Environmental Marketing Claims to help marketers avoid deceptive environmental claims [1-3]. Previous versions of the Green Guides were issued in 1992, 1996, and 1998.
Over recent years, Amcor Flexibles has carried out extensive research into SiOx coating of renewable films. PLA (polylactic acid) has proved to be a suitable base film and Amcor Flexibles has developed a thin film coating technology to SiOx coat this special film.
BASF and Purac, a subsidiary of CSM, are establishing a joint venture for the production and sale of biobased succinic acid. The company will be named Succinity GmbH and will be operational in 2013. The establishment of Succinity GmbH is subject to filing with the relevant competition authorities. The company headquarters will be in Düsseldorf, Germany.
The global pet food industry, of which Europe and the U.S. make up 80%, is expected to grow to $56.4 billion (€44 billion) by 2015 according to Pet Foods: A Global Strategic Business Report by Global Industry Analysts, Inc. Trends in the pet food industry strongly correlate with societal ideas about nutrition.
In early November, PolyOne Corporation introduced reFlex™ 300 bioplasticizer. Derived from rapidly renewable feedstocks and certified to contain 99% bio-based content, this non-phthalate alternative provides a one-for-one replacement for general-purpose plasticizers used in flexible vinyl formulations.
The French Company ELISE, a specialist in office paper recycling, has adopted ROQUETTE’s plant-based plastic GAÏALENE® for a new baskets that it is going to place at the disposal of companies next year.
The Biopolymer Network at the Agency for Renewable Resources (FNR), an emerging initiative set up in Germany by the Federal Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Consumer Protection (BMELV), just recently launched its German language website. Focusing on current topics and issues of using bio-based materials and their products the network addresses a broad array of stakeholders, initiates discussions and develops important background information.
The new International Business Directory for Innovative Bio-based Plastics and Composites (iBIB2012/2013), co-published by nova-institute (Huerth/Germany) and bioplastics MAGAZINE is the most successful ever:
Conceptually, to be able to use naturally synthesized biopolymers from plant biomass, one needs to devise a ‘sorting mechanism’ that separates at high yield and high purity the products of interest. This, however, is not an easy task since plants are a natural composite material, where the components making it are organized in a highly intricate way.
Bioplastics that are naturally synthesized by microbes could be made commercially viable by using waste cooking oil as a starting material. This would reduce environmental contamination and also give high-quality plastics suitable for many applications, according to scientists who presented their work at the Society for General Microbiology‘s Autumn Conference (03 - 05 Sept. 2012) at the University of Warwick, UK.
International sustainable resins supplier, Cardia Bioplastics Limited from Mulgrave, Victoria, Australia and emerging organic skincare company, Ecocare Natural Pty Ltd (Sydney, Australia), have partnered to produce a world first in the skin care industry – ECOCARE™ eco-friendly facial wipes enclosed in eco-friendly packaging.