ioplastics MAGAZINE Vol. 4 ISSN 1862-5258

Show Preview | 21


Basics of PHA | 36

03 | 2009


Material Combinations |12

Rigid Packaging | 16

bioplastics MAGAZINE

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Plastics For Your Future

Another New Resin For a Better World

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Great events often generate great anticipation, and NPE, the

International Plastics Showcase in Chicago in mid June, is no

exception. Despite the current economic situation more than 1,00

exhibitors will present their portfolios to an expected ,000 plastics

experts from more than 120 countries. There will also be about 1,000

conference presentations to round off this event. Of course bioplastics

will definitely be a feature of the show. Exhibitors will present

products or services related to plastics from renewable resources or

biodegradable plastics at more than 40 booths. bioplastics MAGAZINE

has prepared a comprehensive show preview, including a show floor

map, which can be found in the centre of this issue.

Another editorial focus in this issue is ‘Material Combinations‘. For

a number of applications the use of a single bioplastic material may

not offer sufficient properties in terms of performance. However,

significantly improved properties can be achieved by a combination

with other bioplastics, natural fibres or – if needed – conventional

plastics. We also have a focus on ‘Rigid Packaging‘, which not only

covers cups and clamshells but also, for instance, foamed packaging.

As you read this magazine, and also the last few issues of bioplastics

MAGAZINE, you may have the impression that it is always ‘the usual

suspects‘ contributing editorial articles. We are of course very grateful

for these informative contributions, but we also earnestly invite all

producers of raw materials, semi-finished products, final products or

services to contribute to the editorial content of bioplastics MAGAZINE.

This is a communications medium for the whole bioplastics industry,

their customers and other interested parties and we are keen to

represent the views of all of our readers. Contributions can be as

simple as a letter to the editor, be it about the oxo-discussion, end-oflife

scenarios, the bioplastics vs food debate, or whatever.

I hope you enjoy reading this issue of bioplastics MAGAZINE and look

forward to your comments, opinions or contributions.


Michael Thielen

Courtesy Uhde Inventa-Fischer

bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4 3


Editorial 03



Application News 30

Event Calendar 41

Suppliers Guide 44

Glossary 42

May/June 03|2009


From Punk to Evergreen 8

Material Combinations

From Science & Research

Novel Bioplastic Blends and Nanocomposites 32

Carrot Steering Wheel and Chocolate Biodiesel 34

Extrusion Coating or Laminating 12

Blends of PHBV With other Polymers 14

Event Preview

2nd PLA Bottle Conference


NPE Preview 21

Rigid Packaging

Flexible Bio-foams


Thermal Cooler Box 18

Lifecycle Advantages of PLA over rPET 19

More than Cups ... 20


Publisher / Editorial

Dr. Michael Thielen

Samuel Brangenberg


Mark Speckenbach, Jörg Neufert

Cover Photo:

Courtesy Uhde Inventa-Fischer

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bioplastics MAGAZINE

ISSN 182-28

bioplastics magazine is published

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bioplastics MAGAZINE is printed on

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bioplastics MAGAZINE is read

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Not to be reproduced in any form

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spelling may also be used.

Editorial contributions are always

welcome. Please contact the

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4 bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4


Coca-Cola Introduces

Bottle Made From

Renewable, Plant-

Based, Recyclable


A few days before publication of this issue of bioplastics

MAGAZINE the Coca-Cola Company unveiled a new plastic

bottle made partially (up to 30%) from plants. The

‘PlantBottle’ is fully recyclable, has a lower reliance on a

non-renewable resource, and reduces carbon emissions,

compared with petroleum-based PET plastic bottles.

“The ‘PlantBottle‘ is a significant development in

sustainable packaging innovation,“ said Muhtar Kent,

Chairman and CEO of The Coca-Cola Company. “It builds

on our legacy of environmental ingenuity and sets the

course for us to realize our vision to eventually introduce

bottles made with materials that are 100 percent recyclable

and renewable.“

The new bottle is currently made through an innovative

process that turns sugar cane and molasses, a byproduct

of sugar production, into a key component for PET

plastic. Coca-Cola is also exploring the use of other plant

materials for future generations of the ‘PlantBottle’.

Manufacturing the new plastic bottle is more

environmentally efficient as well. A life-cycle analysis

conducted by Imperial College London indicates the

‘PlantBottle’ with 30 percent plant-base material reduces

carbon emissions by up to 2 percent, compared with

petroleum-based PET.

Another advantage to the ‘PlantBottle’ is that, unlike

other plant-based plastics, it can be processed through

existing manufacturing and recycling facilities without

contaminating traditional PET. So, the material in the

‘PlantBottle’ can be used, recycled and reused again and


Coca-Cola North America will pilot the ‘PlantBottle’

with Dasani and sparkling brands in select markets later

this year and with vitaminwater in 2010.

bioplastics MAGAZINE is planning a more comprehensive

report for the next issue which - among other topics - will

feature a special editorial focus on bottles.



Hans-Josef Endres, Andrea Siebert-Raths

Technische Biopolymere

Rahmenbedingungen, Marktsituation,

Herstellung, Aufbau und Eigenschaften

628 Seiten, Hardcover

New Book!

Engineering Biopolymers

General conditions, market situation,

production, structure and properties

number of pages t.b.d., hardcover,

coming soon.

This new book is available now. It is written in German , an

English version is in preparation and coming soon. An e-book is

included in the package. (Mehr deutschsprachige Info unter

The new book offers a broad basis of information from a plastics

processing point of view. This includes comprehensive descriptions

of the biopolymer market, the different materials and suppliers

as well as production-, processing-, usage- and disposal

properties for all commercially available biopolymers.

The unique book represents an important and comprehensive

source of information and a knowledge base for researchers,

developers, technicians, engineers, marketing, management and

other decision-makers. It is a must-have in all areas of applications

for raw material suppliers, manufacturers of plastics and

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packaging suppliers, the automotive industry, the fiber/nonwoven/textile

industry as well as universities.


Definition of biopolymers

Materials classes

Production routes and polymerization

processes of biopolymers


Comprehensive technical properties

Comparison of property profiles

of biopolymers with those of

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Disposal options

Data about sustainability and


Important legal framwork

Testing standards

Market players

Trade names



Current availabilities

and future prospects

Current application


Future market development

order at, by phone

+49 2161 664864 or by e-mail

bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4

Order your english copy now and benefit

from a prepub discount of EUR 50.00.

Bestellen Sie das deutschsprachige Buch jetzt zum Subscriptionspreis

von EUR 249,00 (bis 31. Juli 2009, der spätere Listenpreis beträgt

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invests $1 million

in applications lab

NatureWorks invested $1 million and 18 months

of staff time to transform its former pilot plant

in Savage, Minnesota, into an Ingeo bioresin

applications lab capable of commercial grade

compounding, sheet extrusion, thermoforming,

injection molding, and fiber spinning.

“Some of the tasks of the new NatureWorks’

application lab include developing and testing

compounds on commercial machines, moving

Ingeo natural plastic into new product areas,

educating converters about Ingeo processing

characteristics, and working side by side with brand

owners and retailers to test their product concepts,”

said Marc Verbruggen, president and CEO. “The lab

is designed to enable NatureWorks, converters,

and brand owners to bring quality products made

from renewable resources to market quickly and


Naturellyseda Receives

2009 Packaging Oscar

The new range of NaturellySeda products has been awarded a

Packaging Oscar 2009 thanks to the increasingly eco-sustainable

and eco-compatible packaging emerging from the manufacturing

partnership between Novamont and Seda (Arzano, Italy).

The award was presented recently by the Istituto Italiano

Imballaggio in the Environment special sections category for

its contribution to prevention of environmental problems, based

on factors such as energy savings, use of recycled materials,

improved logistics, re-use, enhanced recycling processes and

simplified packaging.

NaturellySeda is a new range of recyclable, biodegradable and

compostable containers, by Seda. The line includes glasses for

cold drinks and single- and double-walled cups for hot drinks,

as well as containers and lids for ice cream and yoghurt, made

in paper and a type of Novamont’s Mater-Bi ® containing raw

materials from vegetable oils.

The NaturellySeda line is not only made with sustainable

raw materials, it uses efficient manufacturing cycles to reduce

environmental impact. In accordance with standards EN 13428,

EN 13430, EN 13431 and CR 139-1/2, NaturellySeda products

can be recycled and also composted after use.

Biowerkstoff-Kongress 2009

26. – 27. Oktober 2009, ICS Internationales Congresscenter Stuttgart


Biowerkstoffe sind Werkstoffe, die vollständig oder in relevantem Maße auf Agrarrohstoffen oder Holz

basieren. Dazu zählen u.a. Biokunststoffe, Naturfaser-Verbundwerkstoffe sowie Holz-Polymer-

Werkstoffe (Wood Plastic Composites). In Europa werden aktuell jährlich bereits 400.000 t dieser neuen

Werkstoffe eingesetzt, Tendenz steigend. Seien Sie also dabei, wenn führende Experten der Branche zusammen

kommen und über die folgenden Punkte diskutieren:

■ Branchen und Anwendungen

■ Marktsituation und Trends

■ Verarbeitungsverfahren und Materialeigenschaften

■ Forschung und Entwicklung

Praxisorientiert für Entwickler, Produzenten, Handel und Anwender

Ansprechpartner Dominik Vogt, Tel.: +49 (0) 22 33 – 48 14 49,



nova-Institut GmbH | Chemiepark Knapsack | Industriestraße | 50354 Hürth | |

bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4

European Bioplastics Board with Managing

Director and Secretary General (from left:

Harald Kaeb, Philipp Depiereux,

Erika Mink, Jens Hamprecht,

Francesco Degli-Innocenti,

Andy Sweetman, Jöran Reske,

Hasso von Pogrell, inserted:

Hans van der Pol)


European Bioplastics Has a New Board

Association with new Board, Managing Director and Secretary General

End of April, the industry association European Bioplastics

elected a new Board during the General Assembly.

The new Board is chaired by Andy Sweetman (Innovia

Films). Francesco Degli-Innocenti (Novamont) and Joeran

Reske (Interseroh) are Vice-Chairmen. The former Chairman,

Harald Kaeb, was nominated Secretary General. On

1 March 2009, Hasso von Pogrell was appointed as the new

Managing Director.

The newly elected executive committee succeeds the

former Board led by Harald Kaeb. After 1 years of Board

membership and ten years as Chairman, Harald Kaeb

will hold the position of Secretary General within the

association, working as spokesman and political advisor

(read the interview with Harald Kaeb on page 8). Kaeb‘s

successor Andy Sweetman declared:”The key visions of

European Bioplastics will remain and will be pursued with

renewed vigour: To promote awareness of the benefits

that can be derived from best use of bioplastics in the

marketplace. To ensure that environmental claims on

biodegradability and compostability; renewability and

sustainability can be transparently and independently

substantiated.” bioplastics MAGAZINE will do a comphenesive

interview with Andy Sweetman in the next issue.

In the course of its strategic expansion, European

Bioplastics had already nominated a new Managing Director

on 1 March 2009. Hasso von Pogrell, formerly Managing

Director for the association of the German sawmill

industry, is responsible for the internal affairs of European

Bioplastics. Additionally, the number of Board members

has been increased to seven. Further Board members are:

Philipp Depiereux (Alesco), Jens Hamprecht (BASF), Erika

Mink (Tetra Pak) and Hans van der Pol (Purac), who was

designated treasurer. Two permanent working groups,

‘Bioplastics and the Environment’ and ‘Waste and Recovery’

have been established. The measures taken are in response

to the fast-paced growth of the association and its need to

strengthen its representation in Europe.

European Bioplastics is the European bioplastics industry

association. Supporting members of the association are

leading companies from the agricultural raw materials,

chemicals and plastics industries, foodstuff producers and

waste management companies.

bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4



Punk to


An unusual review of bioplastics development


few weeks ago, when the new board of European Bioplastics

was elected, Dr. Harald Kaeb, the previous chairman, stepped

back to concentrate on his new tasks as the industry association‘s

new Secretary General. bioplastics MAGAZINE spoke to Harald

Kaeb after his fifteen years of board membership and ten years as

chairman, and asked him to reflect on this period in a different way …

bM: When 10 years of chairing European Bioplastics comes to an end,

how does it feel?

HK: Oh, it feels good! Because the baby has grown up, the association

is reaching a new level of achievement. New structures were needed

to cope with the growth of the previous years, new faces will help to

maintain the impetus. We hired a managing director for the day-to-day

business and installed committees dealing with environmental and

end-of-life issues. Many new faces will bring new ideas and dynamics

to the board. And I have a new role, which I like very much.

bM: I like the analogy of the baby ...

Dr. Harald Kaeb

born 28.10.193

received PhD in chemistry at

the University of Wuerzburg,

Germany in 1991

worked years for biobased

products project funding agency

C.A.R.M.E.N. in Bavaria

started his own biobased

chemicals consultancy ’narocon’

in 199

Chairman of European

Bioplastics from 1999 to 2009

HK: Yes, you can really compare the development of European

Bioplastics with human development. A baby can hardly do anything,

but is considered sweet by everyone - everybody loves it. Same with

the birth of bioplastics, very charming innovation based on renewable

and compostable polymers. Its baby phase showed just a few products

with limited performance. In the beginning the association was also

very limited due to lack of resources and experience. This has changed;

our workflow and impact is increasing. And today we have really good

products on the market.

So the kid is not adult yet, but has become a fast-maturing

adolescent. Bioplastics still ‘smell like teen spirit’. You can compare

it with the boy scouts. Young boy scouts can act very well and sensibly

if properly organised. But they are young, not always well focused,

and sometimes a bit rude. They have to fight for their place where

the big boys play. Today the charm of bioplastics is their youth: a

highly attractive innovation, perfectly fitting into the green business

evolution. You can see the potential.

8 bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4


bM: Let‘s come back to your new role. What is it?

HK: In my function as Secretary General I will advise

European Bioplastics in fields of strategic interest. Market

introduction policies and the legal framework are of key

importance to trigger and enhance further growth. This

also includes the development of certain fundamentals

such as standards or labels that will define product

qualities and contribute to the public image of bioplastics.

My task as communicator will be to support these efforts

internally, and in building stakeholder relations and


bM: Sounds like a lobbying role on behalf of Plastics Europe…

HK: (laughs) Yes, but it will be more punk or rock’n’roll

than just mainstream! It will take a while before bioplastics

become conventional ‘pop’ music or mainstream, and

perhaps even a little boring - like mega-successful

polyethylene. Many musicians in the early days of their

careers play in small clubs, not widely recognised by

the public. But if they are good they will develop a higher

profile. Today bioplastics can hardly be ignored but until

they become evergreens they will have to run through all

the phases of maturing. You cannot totally steer or control

such development; there will be ups and downs, successes

and failures.

bM: When will they enter the CD charts?

HK: You can have a big Number One hit in the early stages

of development without belonging to the mainstream. But

by the time they reach the status of big plastic commodities

I might be retired. It is a long way from a few hundred

thousand tonnes to many millions. After 1 years in that

business I only know one thing for sure: It will happen,

you cannot stop evolution. Babies cannot run, teens can’t

drive buses, but adults fly to the moon - and will soon fly

to Mars.

bM: Where do Bioplastics stand today?

HK: Still on the threshold of a wider market entry.

However the changes which are ongoing today are

essential for reaching the next level of performance. More

capacities, more players, more products, more critics.

The bioplastics’ industry has a highly complex value chain.

All players - from the farm via processers to marketers

– must get involved and aligned, in collaborations driven

by commercial interest. As long as everything looks ‘highly

exotic’ there will only be a few pioneers around. Today

we see many new players with many new products, the

application range has increased substantially and more

complex plastic products, like multi layer packaging,

mobile phones or ski boots, have recently become biobased

and/or biodegradable.

bM: More companies, more speed?

HK: Yes. With their adoption and efforts the process

will accelerate and the graph of the result will be a steep

curve. Second and third movers – producers – will lead

to more competition and higher product quality. This is

happening now, new capacities will go on stream in the

months and years.

There is another image that I have used again and again

to motivate myself over the past 1 years. It’s the pioneers

that first settled in North America. These settlers came

to the East Coast and had a spirit of ‘heading for new

horizons’. These people made their way through the

wilderness. And later others followed. One example is

seen in starch compounds: Novamont started very early

and almost alone, today companies such as Plantic,

Cereplast, Sphere-Biotec or Biograde are looking for their

chance, just to name a few. Compostable starch plastics

have the biggest market share today. And look at PLA. It

was triggered by NatureWorks building an industrial scale

plant in 2003. Now they are expanding it, and two European

consortiums are building plants here in Europe.

bM: And Harald Kaeb was the frontier scout who led the

way through the wilderness?

HK: (Laughs) But seriously - investment decisions are

easier when success stories become tangible. Innovation

is always about chickens and eggs: Why spend money

on product and market development and take very high

... giving a TV-interview at an exhibition

bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4 9

isks, if you can wait until the concept has been proven

a success? That is why front runners like Novamont or

NatureWorks and many others are real pioneers. They

started the business based on belief and trust – they have

a vision. Now the next wave has started, and even these

new companies are not averse to taking a risk. In a few

years we will reach the first million tonnes of Bioplastics

capacity in this world. It took 20 years from the start. The

second million will need far less than ten years, and then

it will grow quickly.

bM: What will drive this process?

HK: Logical, factual constraints. We cannot build our

future on today‘s products and way of life. We would

need lots more planets to supply us at our current level

of resource consumption. Thus we need to increase our

‘resource efficiency’, consume less, recycle more products

and use more renewable carbon. Industry can choose: lead

this process or be forced into it. Based on proper fitness

for purpose, the added values of today’s green products,

such as lower environmental impact, renewable sourcing

or biodegradability, will pay back, and less green ones

will pay the cost because they do not fulfil these future

requirements. It will be mixture of commercial pull and

political push.

bM: But this is not yet the case!

HK: But it is likely to come. Carbon management is

the essential future principle. All policies, be it climate,

industrial or product policy, will be based on it. It is not

about how long our fossil resources will last. It‘s the price

you have to pay for fossil carbon - and that will go higher

and higher. If we cannot generate a high fossil carbon

price and a very efficient closed loop economy, our highly

developed society will lose its quality of life and everyone

will face severe risks. Either we adapt to this scenario, or

we fail as a society. Bioplastics, just like the development

of efficient recycling schemes, CO 2

emission trading,

carbon footprint indicators, or renewable energies, are

simply consequences of that development.

bM: I‘d like to round this off with some more general but

personal questions. Why do you like bioplastics so much?

HK: From the very beginning I thought it to be a great

idea. Look at the cycle of nature. Structures are created

and degraded in such an elegant way. You can see that with

photosynthesis nature can create even stable, long lasting

structures such as trees. All products created by nature

are being biodegraded and are somehow recycled without

creating any kind of waste problem. I found it fascinating

to make plastics which are biodegradable, compostable,

and thus copy nature‘s very efficient way of disposal.

Additionally we can create biobased durable polymers

products like biobased PE, where the atmospheric carbon

can be stored for many years in products or by recycling

streams. Bioplastics are great industrial solutions to

severe problems generated by our non-sustainable way

of living. We have the knowledge and capability to create

non-resource-depleting cradle-to-cradle systems. The

solution is carbon management, closed carbon loops and

the sun as an energy source. Just as nature done it for

million years. Isn‘t it fascinating? I wanted to work for

an industry whith such aims and which is able to create


bM: What are your favourite bioplastics products?

HK: Please don‘t mis-interpret the following as an

advertisement or unbalanced political statement. One of

my favourite products is my PLA-fibre bed linen. It is a

great product in which I can sleep very well - and good

sleep gives you power. Another product I like is the

shopping bag. After its initial use to carry the shopping

it can be used as a bio-waste bag. And it also offers a big

surface for communication, be it advertising or sharing

your messages with others. That‘s what I call added

value. The shopping bag is an absolute key product for

the next five or ten years because of its added value

and communication possibilities. And I am looking for a

biobased mobile phone – I need one!

It is quite important that bioplastics products beside

their eco-advantages – do perform. The quality must be as

good or even a little better than those made of conventional


bM: What are you going to do next besides your new task

at European Bioplastics

HK: Well, my job at European Bioplastics is that of an

external consultant, not an employee. I could also act as a

consultant for other companies or governmental bodies in

fields of strategic interest. One of my goals is to establish

a consultancy network of real experts to ensure that

customers get the best advice available.

bM: thank you very much.

The interview was conducted by Michael Thielen

10 bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4

4 th

Next Generation: Green


10 / 11 November, 2009

The Ritz-Carlton, Berlin

Conference Contact:

Phone: +49 30 284 82 358

Material Combinations

Material Combinations

or Laminating

The demand for compostable bioplastics has grown steadily for

ten years at an annual rate of between 20 and 30%. The market

share, however, is still very modest, accounting for less than

T0.1% of the total plastics market. An interesting level of growth is

being seen within the packaging sector. This applies specifically to

multilayer structures where different materials are combined. Each

material contributes its specific advantages to the whole structure.

Article contributed by

S. Facco, E. Fanesi, R. Marangon,

Novamont SpA., Novara, Italy

Novamont’s main mission is to offer original solutions both

from a technical and an environmental point of view, starting from

renewable raw materials. Mater-Bi is a generation of established, yet

continuously evolving, compostable polymers containing compostable

polyesters, starch and other renewable resources, and which is able

to significantly reduce the environmental impact in terms of energy

consumption and green-house effect in specific applications. These

polymers will perform the same as, or even better than, traditional

plastics when in use and will completely biodegrade within a

composting cycle. New sectors are growing in different industrial

applications, driven by technical performances, such as in the case

of extrusion coating/lamination.

The first laminated structures were developed in Europe at the

beginning of the 1990s, when films with a specific ‘soft touch’ were

glue laminated onto cardboard in order to produce rigid office folders.

These were the first attempts at combining two different compostable

structures. Already at that time the main issue was to present new

material combinations that were able to offer an alternative recycling

option (composting). Of course the paper repulping process was

always taken into consideration and thoroughly evaluated.

Beside lamination onto rigid cardboard substrates, because of

their very high Water Vapour Transmission Rate (WVTR) these films

started to arouse interest amongst producers of hygiene products,

such as diapers, overalls etc. Specific requirements were a soft,

noiseless and highly breathable material. Water vapour transmission

rates in the range of 1,000 g/m²/30µ/24h were considered quite

interesting, specifically for diapers, where industry was struggling to

find alternatives to the high percentage of superabsorbers used in the

absorbent padding of the diaper. Highly breathable backing sheets

were considered to be a solution in order to reduce the quantity of

the superabsorbers mentioned above. However the materials were

not performing as requested, especially considering the gauge of the

film. Products used in the 1990s were based on gauges in the range

of 20-24µm. Today there are applications in which a 10µm Mater

12 bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4

Material Combinations

by Extrusion Coating

New compostable film structures, offering completely new

performance profiles in the food and non-food areas

Bi is laminated onto cellulose and viscose non-woven

substrates. The main applications may be found in bed

linen, mattress covers and overalls as used in clean rooms

(in this case it is not only the breathability which offers an

added value, it is also its intrinsic antistatic property).

Today various process technologies are available to

combine layers of different substrates in order to obtain

very specific and tailored properties. There are quite

different film families available which offer very individual

properties and, when combined, suddenly open up a

completely new application profile.

One of these processes is extrusion coating, which

consists of extruding a thin web through a vertical flat die

onto various substrates, such as paper, cellulose films,

PLA, aluminium, nonwovens etc.

Extrusion lamination is very similar to extrusion coating

and requires the same equipment: in this case the molten

polymer is used as an adhesive, in order to bind (‘glue’) two

substrates together.

Various tests are being carried out and are very close to

becoming industrially viable. There are specific structures,

where high barrier properties and specific processing

performances (on FFS lines) have been achieved. Oxygen

and water barrier properties achieved by combining various

compostable film structures (such as Mater Bi with coated

or surface treated cellulose film) have demonstrated not

only that they offer similar food integrity to that offered

by standard materials, but processing on FFS lines is

significantly faster.

such ‘sharp’ edged products as Müsli flakes. The reverseprinted

external cellulose film, which has excellent optical

properties, is combined with a high tenacity Mater Bi film

in order to obtain packaging material which fully covers

the mechanical, organoleptic and processing needs of

such products. Still one of the unique combinations on the

market, it is able to offer compostability under industrial


Other laminated structures are under evaluation,

targeting high barrier properties and still maintaining their

compostability. There are several developments ongoing,

which soon will be introduced onto the market. Mater Bi

has demonstrated that it is perfectly compatible with other

substrates, enhancing dramatically most of the properties

and maintaining key properties such as repulpability. The

latest developed technologies in extrusion coating and

lamination have up to now demonstrated that this technology

will broaden many application areas, particularly food

packaging, in which the physical, chemical, mechanical

and organoleptic protection are of the utmost importance.

Depending on the application, these converting

techniques provide a very efficient and versatile way to

build specific, tailor-made, multi-layer structures.

One of the first industrial, multilayer compostable and

certified products was introduced in the UK by a major

Organic Müsli producer. A market leader in packaging,

based in Dublin, was able to combine a Mater Bi polymer

with a cellulose film, obtaining a structure which offers a

suitable barrier property, excellent organoleptic properties

and very high mechanical properties in terms of toughness

and tear resistance - properties which are needed to pack

bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4 13

Material Combinations

Table 1

Blends of


Article contributed by

Dr. Jim Lunt, V.P. Sales and

Marketing, Tianan Biologic,

Wayzata, Minnesota, USA

Property Units PHB [1] PHBV (5%


Youngs Modulus MPa 10 1400

Tensile Strength MPa 1-40 3

Elongation % 0- -10

Impact Strength J/M 3-0

Melting Point °C 12 1

Tg °C -10 to-1 4

Table 2

Sample Load (MPa) HDT

100% PLA 0.4 2.0

90/10 0.4 3.4

80/20 0.4 4.

0/30 0.4 4.

0/40 0.4 3.0

0/0 0.4 .3

Tensile test bars made of PHBV/PLA

(Photo: Peter Holland B.V.)







Samples Held up to 12 minutes at 100°C

1: 100% PLA

2: 90% PLA / 10% PHBV

3: 80% PLA / 20% PHBV

1-3: 2 Minutes, deformed

4-: 12 Minutes, not Deformed

4: 0% PLA / 30% PHBV

: 0% PLA / 40% PHBV

: 0% PLA / 0% PHBV

As dicussed in other articles, PHBV is one of the simplest

members of the polyhydroxy alkanoate (PHA) family. Typically,

the valerate co monomer is present at around % by weight

of the polymer although products containing up to 11% and 20% of

the valerate have been produced in developmental quantities. The

rationale for incorporation of this amount of the valerate moiety is

to increase flexibility and improve processability over simple poly 3

hydroxy butyrate (PHB), while still keeping the desirable attributes

of high rate of crystallization and high melting point.

Comparative properties of these two materials are illustrated in

Table 1.

At % valerate content, the elongation to break and un-notched

izod impact are both increased over straight PHB, indicating

an increase in ductility. However PHBV is still a rigid polymer. To

further improve flexibility, the valerate content can be increased, but

this comes at the cost of reducing the melting point and slowing

down the rate of crystallization to a point at which these desirable

attributes are lost. An alternative approach to improving the ductility

of PHBV is the use of blends with other more flexible polymers. In

addition, blends of PHBV with other biopolymers such as PLA are of

interest due to the ability of PHBV to provide the higher crystallinity

and hence improved heat distortion over PLA alone. Some examples

of these initial blends and prototype applications are given below:

In February 2008, Design Ideas launched a set of bathroom

accessories under the brand name ECOGEN ® (see bM 02/2008,

03/2008 and p. 38). This is a compounded product supplied by

PolyOne and is based on PHBV and Ecoflex by BASF.

Recently, due to the limited supply of Ecoflex, companies have

begun to investigate blends of PHBV with polybutylene succinate

(PBS), for use in injection molding.

Another potential blend is PHBV with PLA. The rate of crystallization

of PLA is typically too slow to produce injection molded products

with a high softening point. Higher heat performance PLA can be

produced in fibers and biaxially orientated films using the stereo

complex approach and also the use of a talc nucleated or organic wax

nucleated product is being supplied for higher heat thermoformed

applications. PHBV/PLA provides an additional route to high heat

injection molded parts.

As shown in the tensile bars on the photograph, and the heat

distortion temperature (HDT) in Table 2 - the incorporation of as little

as 30% PHBV in PLA provides a significant increase in the ability of

the parts to resist deformation at higher temperatures.

These examples of blends of PHBV with other materials are just

the beginning. As the uses of biobased polymers increase in single

use and more demanding durable applications, blends in which the

benefits of PHBV provide a synergistic combination of properties will

continue to be a route to meeting the property spectrum required

and which is often deficient in many biobased materials when used



14 bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4

2 nd PLA Bottle


14-16 September 2009

within the


Programme of

Munich, Germany | Holiday Inn City Centre

Organized by

Preliminary Progamme:

Monday Sept 14, 2009

- 13:00 Travel to Munich

10:00-13:00 Registration

12:00-13:00 Lunch

13:00-13:1 Michael Thielen, Polymedia Publisher Welcome

13:1-13:40 Michael Carus, nova Institut Keynote Speech

13:40-14:0 Udo Mühlbauer, Uhde Inventa-Fischer From the renewable feedstock to PLA

14:0-14:30 N.N., Natureworks LLC PLA, a versatile material for bottle- and other applications

14:30-14: Bernd Merzenich, Pyramid Bioplastics PLA, World market and availability

14:-1:10 Q&A

1:10-1:30 Coffeebreak

1:30-1: Stefan Bock, Netstal Production of PLA Preforms

1:-1:20 Frank Haesendonckx, KHS Corpoplast Stretch Blow Moulding of PLA

1:20-1:4 Thomas Schierding, Log Plastic Products Experiences in Producing PLA Preforms and Bottles

1:4-1:10 Lars von Carlsburg, KHS Plasmax Enhance Barrier Properties of PLA bottles

1:10-1:3 Mathias Hahn, Fraunhofer IAP Copolymerisation of PLA with view to enhanced barrier and

thermal properties

1:3-1:0 Q&A

19:30 Dinner

Tuesday Sept 15, 2009

09:00-09:2 Pascal Leroy, Sleever International PLA Shrink Labels

09:2-09:0 NN Bioplastics-Shrink-Films for shrink packaging -packs

09:0-10:1 Marcel Dartee, PolyOne Additives / Colorants for PLA

10:1-10:40 Thomas Weigl, Sukano Materbatches for PLA bottle production

10:40-10: Q&A

10.-11:20 Coffeebreak

11:20-11:4 Ernst Wiedmer, Wiedmer New developments in ‘BioCaps’ for PLA bottles

11:4-12:10 Manfred Burkart, AQUAFONTIS GmbH PLA bottles for special events

12:10-12:3 NN Expectations and prospects from a brandowners point of view

12:3-12:0 Q&A

12:0-14:00 Lunch

14:00-14:3 William Horner, Naturally Iowa Experiences from the market introduction of PLA bottles

14:3-14:0 Grant Hall, Good Water Experiences from the market introduction of PLA bottles

14:0-1:1 N.N. Experiences from the market introduction of PLA bottles

1:1-1:00 Q&A

1:00-1:20 Coffeebreak

1:20-1:4 Jöran Reske, Interseroh Biobased carbon content - Determination, Certification and


1:4-1:10 Edward Kosior, Nextek Limitations of automatic sorting of PLA/PET

1:10-1:3 An Voss, Fost plus Collection and recycling systems in Europe, with the focus on

the impact of PLA on the PET recycling streams

1:3-1:0 Q&A

1:0-18:1 Selected experts from the gropup of


Panel discussion: End of life options

Wednesday Sept. 16

Visit to drinktec, the World‘s biggest show on beverage technology

Register now !

bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4


Rigid Packaging

Flexible Bio-foams

Article contributed by

Anneliese Kesselring,

Fraunhofer UMSICHT, Oberhausen

Christian Bonten,

FKuR Kunststoff GmbH, Willich

Foamed plastics have the advantage of a low density with comparably

good material properties. There are different kinds of foaming procedures,

(a) foaming of multi-component systems where the polymer (e. g.

PUR) is generated only by chemical reaction and (b) physical foaming of thermoplastics

in the melt (e. g. PE, PP, PS).

Regardless of the different raw materials along with the different processing

procedures involved, foamed materials are characterised by common features.

Because of the entrapped gas mixture foamed plastics have a low density and

a low thermal conductivity (high heat insulation). However, they still feature

good mechanical properties per unit of weight and offer a substantial saving

of material. The design variety is nearly as wide as that of injection moulded

parts, but often with less tooling costs.

The basic requirement for foaming of plastics is a free flow melt condition of

the plastic before initiating the foaming process in order to enable the forming

of bubbles. When the desired dimension of the bubbles has been reached this

condition has to be fixed. For the foaming of thermoplastics this means that the

thermoplastic itself has to possess a low melt viscosity at foaming start, which

has to be increased rapidly by cooling for fixing the bubbles.

For the formation of bubbles it is possible to make use of different blowing

mechanisms. Either by using a chemical blowing agent which is introduced

as an expanding by-product, by way of a decomposition product of a chemical

reaction within the melt, or by physical blowing agents, e. g. through expansive

vaporization of a low-boiling fluid or by means of mechanical mixing of air.

The formation of bubbles in the melt implies that during the formation of

expanding gases there are areas where a minimum quantity of molecules of

these expanding gases is formed. By means of so-called ‘nuclei’ it is possible

to create additional boundary layers where such minimum quantities of

molecules can accumulate.

Foaming biopolymers

In order to foam biopolymers different requirements have to be met: on the

one hand melt viscosities have to be distributed homogeneously and adjusted to

be sufficiently low for the formation of bubbles; on the other hand, the viscosity

has to be rapidly increased in order to fix the bubbles. Moreover, the chosen

Figure 2: Small textured finishes

Figure 1: Thermoformed foamed film with hinge

1 bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4

Rigid Packaging

Figure 3: EPS foam structure (x100, reflected light);

Photo: Fraunhofer UMSICHT

Figure 4: Foam structure Bio-Flex® A 4100 CL

(x100, reflected light); Photo: Fraunhofer UMSICHT

blowing agent must not influence the bio character

of this class of material. Not only chemical blowing

agents, but also low-boiling fluids have to be chosen

accordingly, since residues may remain in the polymer.

To achieve a homogeneous distribution of the bubbles,

besides a homogenous distribution of the blowing agent

in the polymer, a homogeneous material performance is

necessary. With varying molecular weights this is nearly


Bio-Flex ® A 4100 CL is a bioplastic based on PLA that

has been developed by FKuR together with Fraunhofer

UMSICHT. It is composed of nearly 90 % renewable

resources and is certified as biodegradable. Whereas

with pure PLA only brittle foamed structures can be

produced, Bio-Flex A 4100 CL allows the production

of flexible foamed structures - even with moulded-in

hinges (Fig. 1). The easy flow in its soft condition creates

a small, even textured finish to avoid food sticking on the

surface (Fig. 2).

It is important to observe - by means of suitable

temperature control - that the blowing agent does

not discharge too early from the screw through the

feed section. The wide process temperature range

of Bio-Flex A 4100 CL allows the temperature to be

controlled exactly according to the requirements of the

foam. Bio-Flex with a very uniform distribution of the

molecular mass enables a uniform foaming. With Bio-

Flex A 4100 CL it is easy to produce foamed structures

in series which are comparable in many properties and

applications to, for instance, EPS (figures 3 and 4).

Plastics, made by nature, for rigid packaging

FKuR´s trade name Bio-Flex ® stands for copolyester

blends based on PLA, which – depending on the

respective grade – are composed of up to 100 % natural

resources. Bio-Flex does not contain any starch or

starch derivatives. These Bioplastics mostly replace

conventional LDPE and HDPE as well as polystyrene

(PS) and polypropylene (PP).


bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4


Rigid Packaging


Cooler Box

Sandoz, Inc. (Princeton, New Jersey, USA) and KTM

Industries, Inc. (Lansing, Michigan, USA) recently

announced the launch of the Green Cell Cooler

Box - the first 100% biobased and completely compostable/recyclable

thermal cooler to protect pharmaceutical

products during shipment. The Green Cell Cooler Box is

a standard corrugate box outer lined with panels of cornstarch-based

Green Cell Foam, manufactured by KTM.

Green Cell Foam meets ASTM D400 and ISO 108 specifications

for biodegradability under composting conditions.

Led by Mark Kuhl, Packaging Development Manager

for Sandoz, the project was in response to a new way of

thinking at Sandoz where sustainability has become a

top priority. This was a perfect opportunity to shift the

paradigm and find a packaging solution that utilizes

bio-renewable resources and offers an environmentally

responsible end-of-life option.

The typical pharmaceutical insulated shipper is

constructed with polystyrene and is used for 24-2 hours

before it is discarded. Non-renewable polystyrene is

recyclable but the facilities to enable this are limited and

cost prohibitive, thus relegating it to landfills. Sandoz’

mission was to find an effective sustainable alternative

to polystyrene based on biofeedstocks that would

assimilate back into nature after its use. The mission was

accomplished with Green Cell Foam which is compostable

and can be recycled in the paper recycling stream along

with the outer box, thereby affording the end user with

flexibility in the end-of-life disposal process.

Mr. Kuhl set out to design, test and validate a cost effective

‘green’ cooler that met the rigorous cold-chain shipping

requirements for protecting sensitive pharmaceutical

products. During his tests he discovered Green Cell Foam not

only insulates as well as polystyrene but it also absorbs excess

condensation that would potentially damage the contents of

the package. Green Cell’s ability to wick out ambient moisture

presents a cleaner package for the customer by eliminating

any pooling of water due to condensation.

Green Cell Foam also provides significantly improved

protection against shock and vibration damage when

compared to traditional shipping coolers. Polystyrene coolers

are somewhat brittle and have the propensity to crack under

stress – even from a single impact. A break in the foam can

compromise the integrity of the cooler by providing a channel

for outside air to flow inside. Green Cell Foam can absorb

multiple hits without cracking or breaking, providing a more

stable thermal barrier while also providing improved impact

protection to the contents. This adds value to the overall

package while reducing damage claims.

Sustainability was a key driver to this project. Sandoz

wanted to see the environmental effects of switching from

polystyrene to Green Cell Foam. KTM turned to Dr. Ramani

Narayan of Michigan State University for the answer.

Dr. Narayan provided life cycle assessment data which

demonstrated a significant improvement in all but one of

the LCA indices (eutrophication is slightly higher with Green

Cell). The key metrics from the LCA comparison are an 80%

reduction in greenhouse gases and a 0% decrease in energy


In June 2009, refreshed graphics will grace the outside of

the coolers which will help educate customers recognize and

understand the benefits of the Green Cell Cooler. Mr. Kuhl is

now designing additional sizes of Green Cell Coolers for use

within Sandoz’ North American operations.

It’s a real win-win situation for Sandoz and their customers:

improved performance, improved convenience and a big

improvement for the environment.

18 bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4

Rigid Packaging

Study Confirms

Lifecycle Advantages

of PLA over rPET


first-of-its-kind lifecycle analysis finds that clamshell

packaging made from NatureWorks‘ Ingeo

(PLA), emits fewer greenhouse gases and uses less

energy when compared to clamshells manufactured with

petroleum-based rPET (recycled polyethylene terephthalate).

The Institute for Energy and Environmental Research

(IFEU), Heidelberg, Germany, conducted the head-tohead

lifecycle comparison on more than 40 different

combinations of clamshell packaging made from Ingeo

PLA, PET, and rPET. Both PLA and rPET clamshells

outperformed PET packaging in terms of lower overall

greenhouse gas emissions and lower overall energy

consumed. PLA clamshells clearly offered further

advantages over the petroleum-based rPET in numerous


“Brand owners and converters will lower the carbon

and energy footprint of clamshell packaging by moving

away from PET and rPET to Ingeo polymer,” said Marc

Verbruggen, president and CEO of NatureWorks, the

manufacturer of Ingeo. “This is true with today’s virgin Ingeo

and, in the longer term, recycled Ingeo will decrease that

footprint even more. Furthermore, the high performance

of Ingeo biopolymer in clamshell applications means that

less material may be required to manufacture them — on

average 2 percent less.”

Representative results of the lifecycle analysis

The study showed that clamshell packaging consisting

of 100 percent rPET emitted 2. kilograms of CO 2

equivalents per 1,000 clamshells over its complete life

cycle. PLA clamshells emitted even less, with 1.

kilograms CO 2

equivalents per 1,000 clamshells. The PLA

clamshell was lighter, yet functionally equivalent in terms

of top-load strength.

“The study found that Ingeo compares favorably with

rPET even when a producer chooses not to lightweight

a clamshell,” said Steve Davies, NatureWorks director

of Communications and Public Affairs. “The study also

showed that the next generation Ingeo production process,

now online in 2009, offers further improvements in ecoprofile

and clearly outperforms 100 percent rPET in headto-head


Clear plastic clamshells, like the ones analyzed in

the study, are often used for fresh produce and foodservice

packaging — for example, lettuce, tomatoes, sandwiches,

or deli salads. Currently this packaging is not recycled in

either the U.S. or Europe. In the U.S. clamshell packaging

typically goes to landfills after use, while in Europe this

packaging may be incinerated for waste-heat recovery.

The lifecycle study took both end-of-life scenarios into

account. The complete IFEU lifecycle analysis is available


kg CO 2

eq. / 1000 clamshells








Climate Change

62.7 61.7

Non Renewable Energy










GJ / 1000 clamshells

Energy consumed over the lifecycle for 100 percent rPET

clamshells was 0.88 GJ. This compared to 0.2 GJ for the

lighter, yet functionally equivalent, Ingeo 200 packaging

— an overall 18 percent reduction in energy consumed.




Ingeo Eco-Profile

in 2005



Incineration with Heat Recovery Scenario

Ingeo Eco-Profile

in 2005


bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4 19

Rigid Packaging

More than

Cups ...

Consumers are a very demanding group when it comes to quality and cost awareness – perhaps even more so

in these times of crisis. This applies both to the home market in general and also to fast service restaurants,

canteens and the whole catering industry. But this does not necessarily mean ‘cheap at any price’! Customers

rightfully expect good value for their money.

Meals have to be served fresh, and look appetizing. To be fresh and appealing is, therefore, also expected from

the packaging. Price per portion has to remain affordable, while still serving high-quality food. Thus dishes and

packaging must be easy to handle! Eco-efficiency is seen as a precondition for any packaging. At the same time

sustainable and ecological management is being demanded. Combining all of these requirements in one packaging

concept comes close to achieving the impossible.

Huhtamaki’s answer to this dilemma is its BioWare range of environmentally compatible packaging. This range

consists of cold drinks tumblers and clamshells, suitable for cold drinks, salads and desserts, as well as bio-coated

paper hotcups and sturdy plates and bowls made from Chinet material.

Crystal-clear tumblers and clamshells are made from Ingeo PLA. This plastic resin is made from renewable

plant material, thus saving fossil resources. Products made from Ingeo PLA fully biodegrade within a few weeks,

when deposited in industrial composting units. Huhtamaki produces beer and Polarity tumblers made from this

material in its plant in Alf, Germany, and clamshells are made in Istanbul, Turkey. European users with a minimum

of eco-awareness will easily see the advantageous ‘carbon footprint’ of these locations as opposed to transport

routes for packaging imported from overseas regions.

Thermoformed packaging items are relatively thin-walled

compared to, for instance, injection-moulded items. Ingeo PLA

is the choice basic material, as its density and stability allow for

perfect functionality even at low weight.

It is a matter of common knowledge that prices for conventional

raw materials are currently rather low. In the long run,

however, there will be no alternative to further development of

regenerative fuel and plastics. Paul Blankert, Huhtamaki Sales

Director Central Europe, comments: “Ingeo PLA clearly is the

raw material of the future for Huhtamaki. Increasingly excessive

fluctuations in fossil fuel based plastics result in an increasingly

unpredictable business for participants in the market. And fossil

deposits are finite. Even if it is possible to tap a few more oil

fields, time and effort for their exploitation are mounting up.

Nevertheless, there is and there will be considerable demand for

practical and hygienic service packaging. We are well prepared

for this demand, thanks to our Bioware - Range.“

20 bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4


NPE Preview

Taking place June 22-2, 2009 at Chicago‘s McCormick Place, NPE2009 will be a showcase

and technology exchange for polymers derived from corn, castor beans, soybeans, potatoes,

tapioca, and other natural resources. Thus bioplastics take center stage in this year‘s

NPE2009, The International Plastics Showcase organized by SPI (The Socienty of the Plastics


“The dawn of the era of sustainability has brought with it a worldwide industry consensus

on the need to proactively address issues such as resource depletion,“ said SPI president and

CEO William R. Carteaux. “Bioplastics have emerged as one of the most promising means for

companies to carry out this strategy while operating profitably. Besides enabling businesses

to comply with mandates for renewable resources, these exciting new polymer families will

help ensure the long-term viability of our industry by providing an alternative to traditional

raw materials.“

Kingfa Sci & Tech Co.,Ltd present Ecopond

biodegradable plastics, made from aliphatic

polyester, aliphatic-aromatic copolyester,

biobased polyester, starch or modified starch

etc. The materials can be 100% biodegradable

and compostable and have been certified to meet

EN13432 (AIB Vincotte, incl. ‘OK-Compost’) and

ASTM D400 (BPI). Ecopond can be used for many

kinds of bags, such as garbage bag, t-shirt bag,

shipping, agricultural film etc.

“There is not any polyethylene in Ecopond

bags and no chemical additive to enhance

decomposition“ as Kin Wong, (M.Sc. M.Eng)

Sr. Manager Global Sales & Marketing points

out. Ecopond bags biodegrade naturally under

composting conditions.

Kureha America is introducing a unique, biodegradable polymer,

Kuredux Polyglycolic Acid (PGA). This high-strength polyester resin

provides excellent carbon dioxide, oxygen and aroma barrier properties.

Kuredux PGA also offers controllable hydrolysis, resulting in its

certification as a biodegradable/compostable plastic in the US, Europe

and Japan. Very importantly, Kuredux PGA is compatible with widely

practiced industrial PET bottle recycling processes, satisfying the

Association of Postconsumer Plastic Recyclers (APR) Critical Guidance

Protocols and ensuring the quality of the recycled PET stream. One

promising application offers the potential to replace 20% of the PET

used in carbonated soft drink bottles with only 1-2% of Kuredux PGA,

without sacrificing shelf life requirements. This unique combination

of source reduction, recyclability and inherent barrier characteristics

makes Kuredux PGA ideally suited for high-performance packaging

and industrial applications.

ETP & W11901


Nanobiomatters is producing,

developing and patenting additives based on

nanotechnology designed to maximize plastics

and bioplastics properties through unique,

green and cost effective nanotechnology. These

unique aspects allow the NanoBioTer ® additives

to be adapted to almost any plastics matrix

while offering compliance with EU ad FDA

legislations for food packaging. The main effect

of the NanoBioTer additives is to increase barrier

properties in packaging materials and extend

shelf life of packaged food.


Leistritz will operate their Nano-1 twin screw extruder publicly

for the first time processing 20 and 100 gram micro-batches. The Nano-

1 utilizes segmented screws/barrels, and a state-of-the-art control/

data acquisition package with a torque sensor load cell integrated into

the drive train. The Nano-1 replicates the unit operations of larger

scale equipment with a free volume of only 0.9 cc/diameter - the lowest

volume available for a twin screw extruder that is scalable to production

class machinery.

A series of to 10 minute tutorials will be viewable on demand in a

mini-theatre area on the following topics: HSEI (High Speed Energy

Input) twin screw theory overview, HSEI twin screw terms and formulas,

HSEI twin screw developments (torque/volume/cooling), direct

extrusion, and extrusion of bioplastics.


bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4 21


BASF will of course present its well established Ecoflex ® . The

completely biodegradable and compostable plastic is ideal for trash bags

or disposable packaging as it decomposes in controlled compost within

a few weeks without leaving any residues. Ecoflex is certified according

to ASTM 400, the European Standard EN 13432, the Canadian BNQ

compostability standard and the Japanese standard GreenPla. Certification

is very important for biodegradable materials, as it ensures materials will

swiftly and safely biodegrade in the proper disposal environment.

Being made of fossil resources the compostable Ecoflex is an enabler for

renewable products, such as starches, natural fibers and PLA, by providing

toughness and processability along with complete biodegradability under

controlled composting conditions.


DuPont - In addition to its highperformance

renewably sourced engineering

polymers Hytrel ® RS DuPont Engineering

Polymers is now also announcing the full

commercialization of DuPont Sorona ® EP

thermoplastic resins and DuPont Zytel ®

RS long chain nylons, making DuPont

the company with the broadest range of

renewably sourced engineering resins.

bioplastics MAGAZINE already reported about

Salomons’s new ‘Ghost’ freerider alpine skiboot

using Hytrel RS for the collar. Another

applications shown in bioplastics MAGAZINE

was DENSO Corporation’s new automotive

radiator end tank, marking the first use of

DuPont renewably sourced plastic (Zytel 10

nylon) in mechanical components.

DuPont’s new renewably sourced longchain

nylons include Zytel PA 1010, which is

100 percent renewably sourced, and Zytel PA

10, which is more than 0 percent by weight

renewably sourced. Seven different grades

now are commercial.

Sorona EP resins are available in glassreinforced

and unreinforced grades and on

average contain 3 percent renewable content

by weight. Sorona EP is an engineering

polyester resin and performs and processes

similarly to PBT in molded automotive parts,

electrical components and industrial or

consumer goods.


PSM - Teinnovations Inc./PSM North America presents the full line

of PSM bio-resin. Grades are available for injection molding, extrusion/

thermoforming, blown film, and foaming processes. Resins are certified

by BPI and are ASTM and EN compliant for compostability. Being starch

based, PSM resin is ideally suited for a wide range of products including

high temperature applications - even microwavable food containers.

PSM can be run as a stand alone resin to maximize the sustainable/

biodegradable effect of finished goods or it can be blended with other

additives or many other plastics if a 100% pure PSM part is not required.

In fact, even a small percentage of PSM can be added to an existing plastic

product to increase its green value with little or no impact to price or

performance. New this year is PSM HL-301 blown film grade resin, able to

produce high-strength flexible films and bags without blending or additives.

Also on display will be a variety of PSM finished product to demonstrate

the resin’s abilities, including cutlery, dinnerware, golf tees, industrial and

construction items, packaging solutions, bags, and more.


The SPI Bioplastics Council, a special interest group recently

launched by SPI: the Plastics Industry Trade Association, is leading several

exciting activities at NPE. The SPI Bioplastics Council provides a forum

for resin and additive suppliers, as well as processors and equipment

suppliers, to promote the development of bioplastics as an integral part of

the plastics industry.

The Council is sponsoring the ‘Business of Bioplastics’ educational

session on Tuesday, June 23. The session will include presentations about

new bioplastics technologies, recent government activities impacting the

bioplastics industry as well as a panel discussion entitled ‘Bioplastics: An

Opportunity for Everyone.’ Find more details about the presentations at

The Council also will be exhibiting in the Emerging Technologies

Pavilion in ‘Technology Central’ located in the new McCormick West Hall.

The Bioplastics Council’s focus at the show will center on its mission on

education and promoting this industry’s growth.

ETP / W12b

22 bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4


The Biopolymers and Biocomposites

Research Team (BBRT) at Iowa State

University promotes research and

development of new formulations and

processes for biorenewable polymers and

composites. BBRT focuses on renewable

oils polymerization, protein-based plastics

processing, protein-based adhesives, and

cellulosic-based composites. The team

has a broad range of knowledge including

polymer chemistry, characterization, and


At NPE2009, BBRT will display samples

including flowerpots made from plant

protein; biobased coatings and adhesives;

and composites made from natural oils,

fibers, and agricultural co-products. The

team will also demonstrate their Bioplastics

Footprint Analysis Software. It allows users

to compare petrochemical and biobased

plastics and calculate the overall processing

costs, energy requirements, and greenhouse

gas emissions. The software compares

the costs and eco-profile of plastic parts

from different materials using the specific

parameters for each part.

Evonik Industries - With the development of VESTAMID ® Terra,

Evonik is presenting a new member of its Vestamid family: a group of

new polyamides, the monomers for which are based entirely or partly on

renewable raw materials.

Vestamid Terra DS is based on polyamide 1010 and is the polycondensation

product of 1,10-decamethylene diamine (D) and 1,10- decanedioic acid

(sebacic acid-S). Because both monomers are extracted from castor

oil, Vestamid Terra DS is a material that is based 100 percent on natural

resources. Technically speaking,VestamidTerra DS occupies a position

between the high-performance long-chain polyamides such as PA 12 and

PA 1212 and the standard polyamides PA and PA , which have a shorter

chain length.

Vestamid Terra HS partly made of renewable resources. It is based on

polyamide 10. The material properties can be found between the highperformance

polyamide 12 and the standard polyamides PA and PA .

Like Vestamid Terra DS, Vestamid Terra HS is semicrystalline and thus has

high mechanical resistance and chemical stability.


Plastic Technologies, Inc. (PTI) announces its ability to produce

small quantity extrusion prototypes for multilayer cast film and sheet

products (including bioplastics) within two weeks. The company can also

prototype a limited number of thermoforms.

“We believe we are one of the first companies to offer film and sheet

prototyping capability from small resin quantities—10 to 40 pounds.

Moreover, we can deliver the prototypes faster than previously possible,”

says Jason Haslow, project engineer, PTI.

The prototyping capability includes up to three materials and five layers.

Materials include, but are not limited to, polyethylene terephthalate,

polypropylene and barrier polymers (such as ethylene vinyl alcohol

copolymer and nylon). Emerging biomaterials such as polylactic acid can

also be prototyped.



Jamplast Inc. is one of the largest distributors of raw plastic materials and biopolymers in North America. The Jamplast

team will be exhibiting and presenting at NPE to help attendees have a better understanding about biopolymers and how to work

through the decision-making process when considering the right products for their molding needs.

At NPE the Jamplast team offers technical counsel and support that will help visitors identify material-based solutions.

Jamplast also particpates in a Panel Forum: ‘Biopolymers and Sustainability Revealed‘: There remains a cloud of uncertainty

around the ‘sustainability’ buzzword when it comes to success, performance, profitability and where to get started. The panel

of speakers will address the challenges, opportunities and uncertainties about biopolymers. (Find more details about the

presentations at

Jamplast is an authorized distributor of NatureWorks biopolymers, Cereplast biopolymers and JER Envirotech



bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4 23


PolyOne Corporation is exhibiting a complete family of bio-related

compounds and additives at NPE 2009 from the PolyOne Sustainable

Solutions portfolio, including Bio-colorants and additives: OnColor BIO and

OnCap BIO, as well as OnColor WPC for wood plastic composites. BPAfree

materials presented are Edgetek Tritan filled and unfilled compounds

and blends. GLS OnFlex BIO are bio-based TPEs. Furthermore there will be

custom bio-compounds based on PHBV (see also p. 14). A new family of biobased

compounds to be introduced at the show as well.

In the Emerging Technologies Pavilion, located in the West Hall, PolyOne will

be sponsoring an exhibit featuring their full portfolio of PolyOne Sustainable

Solutions in the Biopolymers section. PolyOne‘s full range of solutions can be

viewed at their booth in the West hall.

ETP / W10a and W113021

West Hall

West Hall Ballroom






Skyway To

South Hall










5 7


























The numbers in the yellow circles


refer to the table on the next page

24 bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4


Company Booth-Number See preview

on page

Number on


Amco Plastic Materials Inc. W12020 1


API-Kolon Engineered Plastics W122032 3

BASF ETP / W12120 22 4

bioplastics MAGAZINE ETP / W19a/19b

Biopolymers and Biocomposites Research Team W11802 2

Cereplast ETP / W11a 2

Chemtrusion, Inc. W9032 8


DuPont W113011 22 10

Eastman Chemical Company S8084 South Hall

EMS-GRIVORY America, Inc. W13040 11

EOS ( Electro Optical Systems ) W10021 12

Evonik Degussa Corp. S02 23 South Hall

Ex-Tech Plastics, Inc. W118029 13

Felix Composites Inc. W103028 14

General Color, LLC W128034 1

Hallink RSB Inc. W13104 1

Heritage Plastics W10022 2 1

ICO Polymers W123043 18

IDES W128031 2 19

Jamplast, Inc. W1304 23 20

Kal-Trading Inc W12903 21

Kingfa Sci. & Tech. Co., Ltd. W103023 21 22

Kureha Corporation (America) Inc. W11901 21 23

Leistritz N04 21 North Hall

LTL Color Compounders, Inc. W138041 24

Merquinsa W131043 2 2

Telles (Metabolix, Inc.) W119020 2 2

Nanobiomatters W9028 21 2

Plastic Technologies, Inc. S2081 23 South Hall

PolyOne Corporation (& GLS Corporation) W113021 24 28

Polyvel, Inc. S3042 South Hall

PSM (Teinnovations) W100038 22 29

Recycling Solutions, Inc. W1004 30

Sabic W123011 31

Southern Star Engineering Group N803 North Hall

SPI Bioplastics Council ETP / W12b 22 32

Teknor Apex Bioplastics Division ETP / W18b and W1320 2 33

TP Composites Inc. W12031 34

TradePro Inc. W132011 3

U.S. Depart. Of Agriculture, Agriculture Research Service W 3

United Soybean Board W13003 3

US Army Natick Soldier Research Development and Engineering Center W94020 2 38

Zhejiang Hangzhou Xinfu Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd W11203 2 39

The first letter of the booth number indicates the hall (W: West, S: South, N: North).

ETP stands for the Emerging Technologies Pavillion in the West hall.

bioplastics MAGAZINE cannot give any guarantee that this list is correct or complete.

bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4


Cereplast is going to promote their

existing range of Cereplast Compostables ® as

well as the new Compostable 001 especially

designed for extruded foam sheet(thermoforming

application like meat tray, egg carton,

plates..), and Compostable 3000 for blown film

(liner, bags). Cereplast Hybrid Resins ® family

has expanded with 2 injection molding grades

Hybrid 101 (high impact) and Hybrid 103 (higher

melt index). Cereplast materials are based on

PLA sourced from NatureWorks

Among other items, the company will show

a triple edge paint and trim guide (photo).

Cereplast recently signed a supply contract

with Warner Manufacturing Co.. Warner will

use Cereplast resins for putty knives, scrapers

and other painting accessories.

The U.S. Army Natick Soldier Research Development and

Engineering Center (NSRDEC) has been conducting extensive research

in the area of biodegradable and bio-based polymers for several years.

The center can a unique capability to analyze the biodegradability and

toxicity of various types of materials in such medium as compost, soil,

and marine water. The NSRDEC specializes in biodegradation testing

in the marine environment as most of their support is from the U.S.

Navy’s Waste Reduction Afloat Protects the Sea Program (WRAPS). The

NSRDEC was awarded certification from the Biodegradable Products

Institute (BPI) in October of 200 to perform American Society for Testing

and Materials (ASTM) standard test method ASTM D91 (Standard Test

Method for Determining Aerobic Biodegradation of Plastic Materials in the

Marine Environment by a Defined Microbial Consortium) and ASTM D081

(Standard Specification for Non-Floating Biodegradable Plastics in the

Marine Environment).


ETP / W11a

Last December, IDES – The Plastics

Web ® was shortlisted as a finalist in the

2008 Bioplastics Awards for their Prospector

plastics search engine. The newly released

Green Plastics Search in Prospector provides

fast access to datasheets on more than 200

renewable, biodegradable and high-recycled

content resins. Technical processing and

property information in Prospector highlights

green plastic materials from suppliers

including BASF, Dow Plastics, DuPont

Engineering Polymers, Eastman Chemical

Group, Ecoplast, NatureWorks LLC, SABIC

Innovative Plastics, and many more.


Telles, the joint venture between Metabolix and ADM that produces

Mirel, will be located at booth 119020 in the West Hall, across from

the Emerging Technology pavilion. Telles will be showcasing the

new commercial grade of high performance bioplastic, Mirel P1003

(polyhyrdoxyalkanoate PHA), the second generation of injection molding

resin, suitable for a wider range of applications. Telles will also be

represented in the Emerging Technology pavilion as part of the Society of

Plastics Industry Bioplastics Council kiosk.

During NPE representatives of Telles will give a number of presentations:

At SPE ANTEC Tom Pitzi will talk about ‘Processing Biobased /

Biodegradable PHB with conventional Thermoplastic Process Equipment‘,

Raj Krishnaswamy will present ‘Single Screw Extrusion of Biobased and

Biodegradable PHB Copolymers’ and in a second talk ‘Processing and

Structure-Property Relationships of Mirel PHB Copolymer Blow Film‘.

Bob Findlen introduces ‘Mirel – A Renewable Material Option for the

Growing Bioplastics Marketplace‘ at the SPI‘s Business of Plastics event.

Find more details about the presentations at www.bioplasticsmagazine.


ETP & W119020

2 bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4


Zhejiang Hangzhou Xinfu Pharmaceutical

Co Ltd was established in Nov. More

than 100 employees work at Xinfu with its

sub companies and one overseas branch

office. Xinfu is a global leading manufacturer of

Vitamin B depending on its own patent, and

is the only manufacturer of D-panthenol in

China. Besides, Xinfu attends to develop new

biochemistry products, such as PBS, Red Yeast

Rice and activated carbon.

Now Xinfu constantly makes effort to develop

PBS a worldwide green plastic material. Poly

(1, 4-butylenes succinate), shortened as PBS,

is a kind of fully biodegradable macromolecular

resin that accords with the certificates of EN

13432 and ASTM D 400. PBS has good thermal

stability, fine mechanical and processing

performance and can be used in many different

fields. It can be molding processed in standard

plastic apparatus and modified with other fully

biodegradable materials to meet all kinds of



Teknor Apex‘s Bioplastics Division will introduce its first Terraloy

products, including materials for film and molding applications. Among

these will be polyethylene/thermoplastic starch (TPS) blends, and blends

of TPS with biodegradable polyester. Other blends the company is currently

working on are TPS with other bioplastics, such as PLA.

Teknor Apex will offer ready-to-process compounds and masterbatches.

Being a custom compounder, Teknor Apex has the expertise to tailor

compounds to specific customer applications.

Just recently Teknor Apex signed a licensing agreement with Cerestech

Inc. on a unique method for blending relatively low-cost thermoplastic

starch (TPS) with synthetic polymers or other bioplastics while retaining

high levels of key performance properties. The Cerestech technology is

based on a process that blends TPS with other polymers in a single step

avoiding to degrade the properties of the blended components.

ETP / W18b and W1320

Heritage Plastics will present its newly developed BioTuf9

for compostable bag production. BioTuf9 is a pelletized mineralcontaining

compound based on a blend of compostable resins, including

an aliphatic/aromatic co-polyester. It is specifically designed to be

easily extruded and converted on standard low density PE or groovedfeed

HMW-HDPE processing equipment. BioTuf9 films have physical

properties similar to linear-low density polyethylene. Films up to 3.0 mils

thick will completely degrade in commercial and municipal composting

environments in accordance with the requirements of ASTM specification

D400. Producers of bags and liners used for diversion of food and organic

waste from landfills to commercial composting facilities will appreciate

that this product is approved by Biodegradable Products Institute.



Of course bioplastics MAGAZINE

must not be missing at a show like NPE. Being

the first and only trade magazine worldwide,

bioplastics MAGAZINE is presenting its 1 th issue

now. The magazine is 100 % dedicated to

bioplastics in its definition A) plastics based on

renewable resources and B) biodegradable and

compostable plastics according to ASTM 400,

EN13432 or similar standards. Readers from

more than 80 countries around the globe receive

bioplastics MAGAZINE six times a year. If you are

not a subscriber yet, now is the best chance.

See the bioplastics MAGAZINE team at NPE and

benefit from a special show subscription offer.

ETP / W19a/b

Merquinsa will showcase its Frost & Sullivan 2008 award winning

bio-thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU).

PEARLTHANE ® ECO range made from Renewable Sources. “Merquinsa

will bring customers at NPE 2009 more reasons to choose Pearlthane

ECO, its plant-derived and recyclable TPU and will demonstrate its

ongoing commitment to environmental protection and leadership in

‘green’ TPU technologies,” according to a company spokesman.

A recent preliminary life cycle analysis (LCA) indicates that manufacturing

Pearlthane ECO TPU range results in 40% less CO 2

emissions. In addition

to its innovative plant-based TPU products, Merquinsa will display its full

range of TPU specialties used in a wide range of applications including

sports & leisure, consumer goods, melt coating, and film & sheet

applications. Merquinsa representatives will be available to discuss the

latest developments in the company’s capabilities and services for the

North American market.


bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4



Herbs And Spices Packed

in High Barrier Film

Austrian producer, Sonnentor, decided to wrap its range of herbs

and spices in Innovia Films’ high barrier compostable cellulose-based

material, NatureFlex NK. This film offers not only biodegradability

and compostability, but also a moisture barrier approaching that of

co-extruded OPP. This means it has the best moisture barrier of any

biopolymer film currently available, which has been achieved through

Innovia Films’ unique coating technology.

Kids in UK

planted trees

for a better


World famous environmentalist David

Bellamy explained the benefits of biodiversity

and habitat creation to fascinated children at

two schools in Bedfordshire, UK. Together

with the kids he planted trees donated by

Marchant Manufacturing Ltd., manufacturers

of compostable bags.

Tree Appeal are managing the environmental

initiative, set up by Marchant Manufacturing,

which is working to make the compostable

bags used by Central Bedfordshire Council’s

Waste Team, even greener.

By donating trees to be planted, Marchant

Manufacturing and Stanelco BioPlastics are

offsetting their environmental footprint, helping

their customer contribute to the balance

of the natural world, and educating local

children about their environment. Children

at both Russell Lower School in Ampthill and

Southlands Lower School in Biggleswade

produced imaginative drawings about the event

showing their understanding of recycling food

waste and the importance of trees.

Sonnentor was founded over 20 years ago in the ‘Waldviertel’ region by

Johannes Gutmann. He wanted to sell locally grown and dried organic

herbs and spices with the emphasis on traditional harvesting and

refining methods, innovation and Fair Trade principles. The company

has gone from strength to strength and employs 100 people in Austria,

with % of its product exported.

Outlining why Sonnentor chose NatureFlex to package its herbs

and spices, Gutmann comments, “Sonnentor’s formula for success is

innovative product concepts and high-quality, carefully selected organic

ingredients. This organic way requires innovative solutions for our

packaging. NatureFlex plays an important part in our sustainability and

successful future.”

“With its excellent barrier properties, NatureFlex NK fills a major

gap in the compostable materials market. Now dry, moisture-sensitive

foods can also be wrapped using a compostable solution. We anticipate

this will open up a host of new opportunities both for NatureFlex on its

own, or as part of a laminate solution with other biofilms,” exclaims

Andy Sweetman, Innovia Films’ Global Marketing Manager, Sustainable


NatureFlex NK is a transparent, general purpose packaging grade

suitable for various applications eg dried foods (biscuits, cereals, crisps,

snack bars etc). The product is also ideal for lamination to other biofilms.

NatureFlex NK is available in 20, 23, 30, 4 micron thicknesses and can be

used for a variety of pack formats – VFFS, flow wrap, twistwrap and overwrap.

28 bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4

Application News


Margarine Pack

in Brazil

Brazilian IraPlast Ltd., based in Iracemápolis,

São Paulo, Brazil, has been the exclusive Cereplast

representative for biodegradable resin in Brazil since

200. Cereplast‘s biodegradable resins are based on

PLA supplied by Nature Works.

One example of a packaging application made from

the Cereplast grade TH-01-A is a margarine pack for

a product called Cyclus - Nutrycell. The customer,

Bunge Foods, is the first company in Brazil to introduce

biodegradable packaging.

The thermoformed containers are produced by Poly-

Vac, a company belonging to a consortium of packaging

manufactures working for Bunge Brazil. In this initial

project the distribution will be local in the states of Rio

Grande do Sul, Santa Catarina and Paraná, but later

the whole Brazilian territory will be covered.

Bunge Foods created the Cyclus margarine line

based on the concept that the human body is formed of

hundreds of millions of cells that should be taken care

in an appropriate way by the consumption of nutrients

and other bioelements.

An environmentally-friendly pack that comes from

renewable resources and is compostable after use,

reflects the concept of the margarine line, namely to

adopt a varied diet and a healthy lifestyle.

After their initial experience Bunge Foods intends to

carry these packing concepts over to others product


Södra launches

Parupu – a chair

for kids

Södra from Växjö, Sweden has developed a chair

made from pulp in collaboration with design and

architect firm Claesson Koivisto Rune. The chair is

designed for children. It is durable and waterproof,

despite having the look and feel of ordinary paper.

It is recyclable, environmentally-friendly, stackable,

colourful, and made for fun and games.

The team’s objective from the start was to make

something that felt like paper but with the durability

normally associated with materials such as steel,

wood or hard plastic.

The architect and design firm had long wanted to

make a chair from paper. Together with Södra and

research company STFI Packforsk, Claesson Koivisto

Rune experimented and tested the suitability of the

material for use in a tough and practical chair for

children. The chair has been named Parupu after the

Japanese word for pulp.

The material is a speciality pulp from Södra Cell

combined with PLA which makes it an eco-friendly,

recyclable material that can replace conventional

plastic. The chair can be wiped clean, and is designed

to last a childhood, withstanding a lot of play.

The chair’s base material, which can be moulded

and could potentially replace plastic in a number of

applications, has been named DuraPulp. DuraPulp

has the look and feel of paper. But a couple of

millimetres in thickness is enough to support the

weight of a person. It can be left outdoors for several

years without degrading.

30 bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4

Biobased elastomer

in running shoes

Looking for a Bio-Solution?

Let PolyOne be your guide...

Japanese company Mizuno, a leader in running footwear

and apparel technology, has announced the use of a

Pebax ® Rnew thermoplastic elastomer range for the Wave ®

Technology plates in four models of high performance

running shoes set to debut in 2009. The material supplied by

Arkema is made from renewable resources, castor oil, and

contributes to global warming reduction.

The Pebax Rnew will be utilized in both men’s and women’s

models of the Mizuno Wave Rider ® 12, Wave Inspire ® , Wave

Creation ® 10, and Wave Nirvana ® .

Until June 21 st our readers can win a pair of Mizuno Wave

Rider 12 at the 1 st website mentioned

below, a website dedicated

to sports applications.


Awards Major

Contract to


Cereplast, Inc., Hawthorne, California, USA recently

announced that it will supply Compostables ® resin to

Georgia-Pacific Professional Food Services Solutions for the

manufacture of its recently introduced line of Dixie EcoSmart

beverage solutions. : Georgia-Pacific LLC., Atlanta, Georgia

is one of the world‘s leading manufacturers and distributors

of tissue, pulp, paper, packaging, building products and

related chemicals.

Dixie EcoSmart products include among other products

Cereplast Compostables resin-lined paper hot cups made

from at least 9 percent renewable resources which are

designed to allow operators to enhance their environmental

stewardship position.

All Dixie EcoSmart products can be processed successfully

in commercial composting operations. The Cereplast

Compostables resin-lined paper hot cups are 100 percent

compostable because the fiber portion and the coating are

fully compostable. Cereplast Compostable resin contains

Ingeo ® PLA supplied by NatureWorks.

PolyOne’s cutting-edge portfolio of

sustainable solutions can help you meet

today’s challenges with renewable,

recyclable, reusable, resource ef cient,

eco-friendly materials.

PolyOne Sustainable Solutions SM


BPA-free compounds

Edgetek Copolyester Compounds - made with Eastman Tritan Copolyester

Eco-friendly TPE’s

OnFlex BIO Thermoplastic Elastomers

Additives for bio-derived polymers

OnCap BIO Additives & OnColor BIO Colorants

Colorants for bio-derived polymers

OnColor BIO Colorants

Non-phthalate colorants

OnColor BIO Colorants

Non-phthalate vinyls

Geon Vinyl Non-phthalate Vinyls

CPSIA-compliant vinyls

Geon Vinyl CPSIA-compliant Compounds

Lead replacement compounds

Gravi-Tech & Trilliant Polymer Composites

Non-lead wire & cable systems

Geon Vinyl Wire & Cable Compounds

Halogen-free, non-corrosive polymer systems

ECCOH Low Smoke and Fume, Zero Halogen Compounds

Non-phthalate, vinyl-alternative, and water-based inks

Wil ex Epic Series, Wil ex QuantumOne, & Wil ex Oasis

To learn more about PolyOne’s Sustainable Solutions, please visit us at:

bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4 31

From Science & Research

Novel Bioplastic Blends

and Nanocomposites

Article contributed by

John R. Dorgan,

Department of Chemical and

Biochemical Engineering,

Colorado School of Mines,

Golden, CO 80401 USA

Birgit Braun and

Laura O. Hollingsworth ,

PolyNew Inc.,

Golden, CO 80401 USA

Figure 1: TEM of cellulose nanowhiskers

derived from acid hydrolysis of cotton linters.

200 nm

The prospect of a hot, flat, and crowded [1] planet earth requires

greater technological efforts in meeting the challenges of creating

industrial sustainability. The triple technological convergence

of industrial ecology, biotechnology, and nanotechnology offers promise

of being able to deliver such sustainability. Industrial ecology uses the

quantitative tools of Life Cycle Assessment to consider impacts like the

generation of green house gases (GHGs) when renewables are substituted

for fossil resources. Biotechnology is providing efficient biochemical

conversions and nanotechnology is having big impacts both in catalysis

and in materials sciences. Here it is argued that the convergence of these

technologies is defining a new field of inquiry which can be referred to as

ecobionanotechnology. Within this context a new class of green materials,

ecobionanocomposites, is being developed.

The now rapidly developing field of degradable bioplastics and

plastic materials based on renewable resources, provides tremendous

opportunities to sustain and enhance the domestic plastics industries,

the fourth largest manufacturing sector. Growth in the use of these new,

greener plastic is proceeding rapidly, however, there are a number of

cases in which bioplastics lack the properties needed to compete with

petroleum based materials.

Drawing on scientific knowledge about the new emerging field of

polymer nanocomposites, these property limitations can be overcome.

In this article, the development of novel polymer nanocomposites based

on renewable cellulosic nanowhiskers combined with polylactide is

described. The fossil energy requirement for the PLA production process

as implemented by NatureWorks is substantially less than for other

commercially produced polymers as shown by life cycle assessment [2].

Significant increases in the heat distortion temperature of polylactides

(PLA) have been achieved using these nanowhisker fillers. Prototypical

thermoformed trays have been fabricated from first generation

nanocomposites and shown to be suited for use as microwaveable frozen

food packaging. Second generation nanocomposites have been shown to

maintain transparency while having higher use temperatures. The use

of cellulosic nanowhiskers means that the resulting nanocomposites

maintain the desirable feature of biodegradability.


Materials. Commercial-grade PLA (2002D, melt-flow index 4-8 g/10 min,

< 4% D-lactide) was supplied by NatureWorks LLC. L-lactide was also

obtained from Natureworks. PLA resin was recrystallized at 110°C for

24 hours prior to compounding. Cellulosic nanowhiskers (CNW) were

prepared via acid hydrolysis of cotton linter using hydrochloric acid as

described in reference [3].

An impact modifier ‘Biomax Strong‘ was obtained from DuPont.

32 bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4

From Science & Research

Methods. For the melt mixing procedure PLA resin

was dried for 24 hours at 80°C under 23 inHg (3,0 Pa)

vacuum. The melt mixed samples were prepared in a

Haake RheoMix 3000. PLA was fully melted at 180°C and

0. wt% tris(nonylphenylphosphite) (TNPP) was added as

a stabilizer. The required amount of CNWs and impact

modifier were added and mixed at 0 rpm for 2 minutes.

Composite samples were vacuum/compression molded

into rectangular bars, crystallized at 110°C for three hours,

and physically aged for 24 hours. Mechanical properties

were determined through dynamic mechanical thermal

analysis (DMTA) using an ARES-LS rheometer with

torsional rectangular fixtures. The testing was carried out

at 0.0% strain, 1 Hz, with a temperature ramp from 30°C

to 10°C at °C/min. The DMTA data was used to calculate

the heat distortion temperature (HDT) via the methodology

of Takemori [4].


Figure 1 is a transmission electron micrograph of

the cellulose nanowhiskers (CNW) derived from cotton.

Evidence of aggregation is clearly present which is usually

present but which becomes more severe upon isolation

and drying [3].

Figure 2 presents the data on tensile properties for the

melt mixed nanocomposites. A typical tradeoff between

modulus and strain at break is observed. PLA already

suffers from relatively low impact properties so the

decrease in impact which is associated with the decreased

strain at break would preclude the use of these materials

for most practical applications.

Figure 3 presents the improvement in the impact strength

associated with the addition of wt% DuPont Biomax. The

simultaneous addition of both reinforcing CNWs and the

Biomax impact modifier produces a material with both

improved modulus and toughness compared to the base


Finally, in Figure 4 it is shown that the nanocomposites

have improved HDTs. While the addition of Biomax Strong

decreases the extent of the HDT it is still possible to reach

for example, an HDT above 90°C while simultaneously

improving the impact properties.


Substantial challenges exist regarding developing a truly

sustainable plastics industry. The judicious selection of

combined technological platforms can assist humankind

in meeting this important goal. In this study, elements

of industrial ecology, biotechnology, and nanotechnology

are combined to create a new largely renewable and

largely degradable polymer nanocomposite with improved

thermophysical properties. These Ecobionanocomposites

are one example of a larger trend towards the triple

technological convergence of these areas of inquiry.

Modulus [ksi]







Tensile Testing Data vs. Cellulose Loading

0% cellulose 10% cellulose


Strain @ break

Figure 2: Ultimate mechanical properties

of melt mixed nanocomposites.

Izod Impact [J/m]










(5% Biomax + CNW)

Figure 3: Impact properties of nanocomposites

with impact modifying agent addition.

Heat Distortion Temperature [°C]








0% Dupont Biomax Strong 120

2% Dupont Biomax Strong 120

5% Dupont Biomax Strong 120

25% cellulose


(5% Biomax)

0 10 20 30

Cellulose Loading Level [wt%]

Figure 4. Heat distortion temperatures of

degradable ecobionanocomposites.


This article was previously published at SPE‘s GPEC 2009, Orlando,

Florida, USA, Feb. 2-2, 2009.

This research was supported by the National Science Foundation

through an SBIR grant to PolyNew Incorporated.


[1] Friedman, Thomas, Hot, Flat, and Crowded: Why We Need a

Green Revolution - And How it Can Renew America (Farrar,

Straus & Giroux, New York, NY) 2008.

[2] Vink, E. T. H.; Rabago, K. R. ; Glassner, D. A.; Gruber, P. R.

Poly. Deg. Stab. 2003, 80, 403.

[3] Braun, B.; Dorgan, J.R.; Chandler, J.P. Biomacromolecules,

2008 9(4), 12.

[4] Takemori, M.; Polym. Eng. and Sci. 199 19(1) 1104.







Strain @ break [%]

bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4 33

From Science & Research

Carrot Steering Wheel

and Chocolate Biodiesel

Researchers at the University of Warwick, Coventry, UK, recently unveiled

the ‘WorldFirst Formula 3 racing car’ which is powered by chocolate,

steered by carrots, has bodywork made from potatoes, and can

still do 200 km/h (12mph) around corners.

Seat shell made of Lineo woven

flax prepreg

Following the recent turmoil in Formula 1 arising from the high costs of

running competitive motor racing teams, and doubts in sponsors’ minds over

the commercial value of their involvement, the viability of motor racing is being

critically questioned. With this in mind the University of Warwick team based

in the University’s Warwick Manufacturing Group (WMG) and the Warwick

Innovative Manufacturing Research Centre (WIMRC) decided to build a

competitive racing car using environmentally sustainable components in order

to show the industry just how much is possible using current environmentally

sustainable technologies. The ‘ecoF3 car’ project is being managed by James

Meredith, an engineer with over years experience in the automotive industry

and who recently completed his doctorate on the subject of biomaterials.

It is the first Formula 3 racing car designed and made from sustainable

and renewable materials, putting the world first by effectively managing the

planet’s resources. The car meets all the Formula 3 racing standards except

for its biodiesel engine which is configured to run on fuel derived from waste

chocolate and vegetable oil. Formula 3 cars currently cannot use biodiesel.

The Chocolate Biodiesel Engine

The decision was made in favour of a 2-litre BMW diesel engine, calibrated

by Scott Racing Ltd., because of its inherent advantages over gasoline in terms

of efficiency. “It is also significantly quieter. Noise is an ongoing issue for race

ecoF3 car

34 bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4

tracks,“ says James. The biodiesel used comes from

sustainable sources (i.e. not fossil fuel or food crops). It is

being produced from recycled cooking oil and recovered

ethanol. The UK’s largest supplier of biodiesel processing

equipment, Green Fuels, is excited to contribute to the

project and prove that an incredibly sustainable biodiesel

with a carbon intensity 9% lower than mineral diesel can

be used in high performance engines. Green Fuels have

also supplied a Fuelpod ® 2 Biodiesel Processor to allow

the WorldFirst team to produce their own fuel for use

in the WorldFirst car and its transport vehicles. James

Meredith: “By producing our own fuel we are able to use

the university’s waste cooking oil, further minimising the

carbon footprint of the whole project“. And, he adds, they

have also produced a biodiesel made from cocoa butter

which will be run in the ecoF3 car.

The Carrot Steering Wheel

Manufactured from a carrot fibre composite called

Curran ® (from the Gaelic word for carrot), the steering

wheel is also a first of its kind. The Scottish company

CelluComp Ltd produces this material, which is a

combination of cellulose, found naturally in the cell walls

of plants, and high-tech resins. Cellulose, however, in its

easily extractable form (such as the fibres used to make

paper etc.), is of limited use for composite materials

manufacture. It is the special properties of extremely

small sub-components of cellulose, called nanofibres,

which are particularly desirable. CelluComp has

perfected its process by using, for instance, carrots and

to a lesser extent, swede. When the extracted cellulose

is combined with a special formulation of resins which

act to bind the particles and waterproof the mixture

once dry, the resulting biocomposite materials have

tremendous strength, toughness and lightness. A key

advantage of the Curran material is that it is produced

in the form of a paste, which means that it can easily be

moulded into whatever shape is required. The paste can

also be coloured with the desired pigments. Increasing

the orientation of the nanofibres in a single direction

significantly increases the stiffness and strength in that

direction. The fibres can be used at very high volume

fractions of up to 90%.

The Flax and Soybean Seat

Even in the bodywork and seat of the ecoF3 car

environmentally friendly materials are being used.

Besides materials from renewable resources these also

include recycled plastics.

The backbone for the Formula 3 car is a chassis

made by Lola, one of the oldest and most successful

constructors of racing cars in the world. Lola

manufactured, for example, parts of the seat. The shell

is made of Lineo woven flax fibre prepregs impregnated

with epoxy resins. The flax yarns and fabrics are bought

Dr Kerry Kirwan, Dr Steve Maggs, James Meredith (from left)

from sustainable sources. The SoyFoam of the seat is a

product of Lear‘s EnviroTec environmental product line. The

seats are made from the same SoyFoam product as what used

on the Ford Mustang (see bM 01/2009). This is a TDI catalyzed

formula wherein percent replacement of polyol results in a %

by pad weight replacement of petroleum-derived polyol with

soybean oil-derived polyol. The Isocyanate material is the same

as petroleum-derived foam. Lear is aggressively working to

increase this percentage replacement level in seating. Another

body part is the bib, which is also made from Lineo woven flax/

epoxy composite.

The Potato Mirrors

New Zealand, represented by the Biopolymer Network,

contributes to the wing mirrors and rear wing end plates. The

wing mirror will be made out of Potatopak, a water resistant

starch packaging material from potatoes. The wing end plates

will be a ply-starch hybrid core covered with a linen-cellulose

acetate composite.

Recycled Materials

Besides materials from renewable resources such as the

above-mentioned carrots, potatoes or soy beans, the WorldFirst

project also uses unconventional recycled materials. The sidepods

for example are made from a glass fibre/epoxy resin

including 20% recycled PET bottles, made by Cray Valley.

Recycled Carbon Ltd, based in the Midlands of the UK,

is a company specialising in the recycling of carbon fibre

composites. The engine cover and the damper hatch are made

from these carbon fibres. The fibres are recovered from cured

and un-cured carbon fibre composites. The company presently

takes material from the aerospace industry, but also from F1

and high-end automobiles. It has been shown that the recyclate

has physical properties of at least 90% of the original fibre.

The Green Motor Racing Car

“It’s been very exciting working on the project and important

for our team to develop a working example of a truly ‘Green’

motor racing car,“ says James Meredith. “The WorldFirst project

expels the myth that performance needs to be compromised

when developing sustainable motor vehicles for the future” - MT

bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4



The Development

Poly Hydroxy

Fig.1 Microbial Cells containing PHA

Fig.2 PHA powder

Article contributed by

Dr. Jim Lunt,

V.P. Sales and Marketing,

Tianan Biologic,

Wayzata, Minnesota, USA

As discussed in preceding issues of bioplastics MAGAZINE -Poly Hydroxy

Alkanoates or PHA’s represent an emerging class of biopolymers

which are presently produced through the fermentation of natural

sugars, vegetable oils or fatty acids. These materials are unique in the

field of renewable resource based biopolymers in that they represent the

only class of polymers which are converted directly by microorganisms from

feedstock to the polymeric form - no additional polymerization steps being

required. The product in the form of microscopic granulates is extracted from

the microbial cells (Fig. 1) and used either as the powder (Fig. 2) directly or

converted to pellets for ease of shipping and handling. Also during the melt

conversion to the pellets, additives such as an antioxidant and nucleating

agent to accelerate crystallization, can be incorporated Although attracting

recent pilot/commercial scale attention by companies such as Tianan

Biologic, Telles, Meredian and others, interest in PHA’s has spanned many

decades. Today there are actually over 300 known microorganisms capable

of producing PHA’s [1] and over 10 monomer combinations that can produce

PHA’s with widely different properties. In terms of commercial interest- poly

3 hydroxy butyrate-co-valerate (PHBV)-Tianan Biologic, poly 3 hydroxy -co-4

hydroxy butyrate, (PHB)-Telles, and poly 3 hydroxy butyrate-co-hydroxy hexanoate

(PHBH) – Meredian, are probably the most well known polymers.

The History of PHA

The ability of micro-organisms to produce and store a PHA within their

cells was first observed by Beijerinck in 1888. He observed inclusions within

the bacterial cells but could not identify their structure. In 192 Lemoigne,

using Bacillus megaterium, identified the polymer to be poly 3 hydroxy

butyrate (PHB). It would appear little more was done in this area for another

30 years until in 198 McCrae and Wilkinson observed that bacteria stored

PHB in their cells. When the carbon to nitrogen ratio in the fermentation

medium was high and when the external carbon source was depleted [2],

they consumed the PHB as a food and energy source. From this point, the

fact that a biopolymer could be produced within a microbial cell, and become

a source of intracellular reserve material, created significant interest among

microbiologists and biochemists. The interest was still, however, essentially

academic. The primary focus was directed on understanding the polymers

significance on the functioning of the microorganisms and how external factors

affected the rate of production and re-utilization by the microorganisms.

Around 193, as oil prices climbed, this academic interest took on a more

practical focus. In 19, ICI in the UK began to investigate if PHB could be

commercially produced using glucose as the feedstock. They developed a

practically viable process but the economics were so completely unattractive

that this initiative was terminated and the technology was divested.

PHA Technology

The manufacture of PHA’S involves providing a microorganism a carbon

feed source such as dextrose or glucose along with suitable nutrients, such as

nitrogen, phosphorus or oxygen which encourage growth and multiplication of

3 bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4


and Commercialization of

Alkanoates (PHA)

the microorganisms. Once the number of microorganisms

reaches the required point, the nutrients are reduced to

create an imbalance, which puts the microorganisms under

stress. The microorganism then begins to convert the

extracellular carbon source through a series of enzymatic

pathways, to a reserve energy source in the form of polymeric

inclusions within their cell. Under ideal conditions, typically,

from 80% to 90% of the cell can comprise the polymeric

form of the hydroxy esters conventionally referred to as the

poly hydroxy alkanoates. The manufacturing process can be

either a fed –batch or multi stage continuous process.

When the mass of the polymer within the cell reaches

the maximum level, the process is terminated. The

polymeric material can be extracted from the cells by the

use of solvents such as chloroform, methylene chloride,

propylene chloride or dichloro methane. It is also possible

to remove the polymer using only aqueous conditions [3].

Today it appears that only Tianan Biologic has successfully

optimized the aqueous extraction route.

Common PHA Structures

The basic structure of the Commercial PHA’s is shown


The R alky group at the C-3, can vary from one carbon

(C1) to over 14 carbons (C14) in length. PHA’s are subdivided

into three broad classes according to the chain length of the

comprising monomers. PHA‘s containing up to C monomers

are classified as short chain length PHA’s (scl-PHA). PHA’s

with C–C14 and over C14 monomers are classified as

medium chain length (mcl-PHA) and long chain length

(lcl-PHA) PHA’s, respectively [4]. Today the short chain and

medium chain length are the most common.

The scl-PHA’s have properties close to conventional

plastics while the mcl-PHA’s are regarded as elastomers

and rubbers.

PHB is the most common type of scl-PHA and has

been studied most extensively. However, this polymer

is extremely brittle and difficult to process without

degradation. The common copolymers of PHA are formed

containing 3-hydroxybutyrate (HB) with 3-hydroxyvalerate

(HV), 3-hydroxyhexanoate (HH) or 4-hydroxybutyrate (4HB)

monomers. These short to medium chain length PHA’s are

typically more tough and ductile (PHBV) to elastomers or

sticky materials which can be modified to product rubbers

(PHBH). In addition they are easier to process due to their

lower crystallinity and melting or softening point.

Processing and Properties of Common PHA’s

PHA’s are aliphatic polyesters. In common with petroleum

based polyesters, these natural polymers are sensitive

to hydrolytic breakdown. Before melt processing the

products must be dried. Manufacturers, such as Tianan

Biologic, typically recommend drying to approximately

20ppm moisture content before processing. Drying can

be accomplished using desiccant or vacuum dryers. If

the polymer is not dried to the recommended maximum

moisture content and kept dry before melt processing, then

hydrolytic degradation will occur leading to significant loss

in molecular weight and reduced mechanical properties in

the final product. Processors and compounders who run

PET or Nylon and , are quite familiar with this issue

and will have the correct drying equipment. Companies who

only process polyolefins or polystyrene may not have dryers

and so often this can cause problems for these companies

in transitioning to the use of a PHA without incurring some

capital investment. Short or medium chain length PHA’s

with low commoner levels such as PHB ( 3 hydroxy-4hydroxy

butyrate) or PHBV can be crystallized which allows drying

at 80-100°C. Longer chain length more amorphous PHA’s

must be dried at lower temperatures and this can also be

an issue even for the polyester and polyamide processors

if the drying temperature is too low. This problem may be

even more problematic for the more elastomeric longer

chain length PHA’s although their sensitivity to hydrolytic

degradation during processing may not be as severe.

Another concern with pure PHB is that the processing

temperature and melting point are extremely close, which

can readily cause thermal degradation of the polymer,

producing crotonic acid. Many studies dedicated to thermal

and thermo mechanical degradation of neat 3- PHB have

revealed that the degradation occurs rapidly near the

melting point according to mainly a random chain scission

process (cis elimination of the ester group). The major by

– products of this degradation are crotonic acid and its

oligomers [].

bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4



PHB Degradation Mechanism

The melting point of 3-PHB is 1°C. By producing

copolymers such as PHBV the melting point is reduced to

around 1°C when % by weight of the valerate units are

incorporated randomly in the polymer chain. This reduction

in the melting point enables a wider melt processing

window and also reduces the overall brittleness compared

to PHB. Increasing the valerate content or using longer

chain co monomers can further reduce the melting point

but may also reduce the rate of crystallization which can

lead to processing inefficiencies due to longer cycle times.

Although the pure PHB is still produced, most common

PHA’s are copolymers designed to have a wider processing

window and a spectrum of properties from rigid to ductile

materials. Other than these drying requirements and

the relatively narrow processing temperatures PHA’s

are otherwise readily processed on conventional melt

processing equipment.

Fig.3 Bathroom Accessories, Photo: PolyOne

Due to the difficulties in processing the 3 –PHB the

industry either produces copolymers, as discussed above

or PHB is compounded with other materials to reduce

degradation and improve processability.

In conclusion, PHA’s are a diverse class of polymers

produced by many natural or modified microorganisms.

Although the technology has been known for long time

in academia the spectrum of products now becoming

commercially available are showing promise in a variety

of traditional and new commercial applications By varying

the co monomer ratio and type, rigid to elastomeric

products can be produced This family of unique microbial

polyesters would appear to have a bright future in the

emerging renewable resource based polymer industry.


[1] Ronny Purwandi – Fermentation Production of



[2] Biotechnological approaches for the production of

polyhydroxyalkanoates in microorganisms and plants —

A review. Pornpa Suriyamongkol Et. Al.

[3] EP 1 0 20 A1 Xuejun Chen- Tianan Biologic

[4] Madison LL, Huisman GW. Metabolic engineering of poly

(3-hydroxyalkanoates): from DNA to plastic. Microbiol. Mol.

Biol. Rev. 1999; 3:21–3.

[] Hablot E et al., Thermal and thermo-mechanical degradation

of poly(3-hydroxybutyrate)-based multiphase systems, Polym.

Degrad Stab (200), doi:10.101/j.polymdegradstab.200.11.0

18 PDST31_proof _ 11 December 200 _ 4/9.

Fig. 4 PHA pellets

38 bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4

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bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 3 39

Letter to the Editor


Event Review

In issue 02/2009 bioplastics MAGAZINE published a short review of the GPEC conference

in Orlando Florida, USA (see bM 02/2009, p.8).

Michael Stephen, Commercial Director and Deputy Chairman of Symphony

Environmental Technologies Plc, sent a letter to the editor commenting on this short


Mr. Stephen stated that Dr. Greene was wrong to call the material ‘oxofragmentable’plastic.

The mentioned formulation breaks the molecular chains within

the polymer and then the material biodegrades.

Furthermore Mr. Stephen took exception to the statement that he ‘was not able to

present any scientifically backed data to prove his claims.’ He said that there is ample

scientific data, and that he had referred to several of the scientific reports in his


bioplastics MAGAZINE offered Mr. Stephen to publish a comprehensive scientifically

based article in the next issue of bioplastics MAGAZINE where he can explain his case

about compliance with ASTM D94 (a standard that he refers to in his letter). He was

asked to provide test data conducted using resins with Symphony based additives. These

test data shall be available for download from the bioplastics MAGAZINE website - MT .

photo courtesy

of Environmental

Division of SPE

GPEC Global Plastics

Environment Conference 2009

Under the headline ’Plastics: The Wonderful World of Sustainability and

Recyling’ about 300 delegates and speakers met from February 25 to 27 in

Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort in Orlando, Florida, USA. The conference

was accompanied by a table top exhibition. One of three parallel sessions was

on Bio-based and Biodegradable Materials.

Among the most interesting presentations, which were attended by an

average of 70 to 90 delegates was Ross Young’s (Univenture) talk about the

Production of Algae primarily for bioplastics and fuel. Corey Linden (Battelle)

introduced methods to improve PLA performance for injection moulding. Todd

Rogers of Arkema spoke about a new type on transparent, (50%) biobased

polyamide, named Rilsan clear. Jim Lunt (Tianan Biologic) and Kristin Taylor

(Telles) presented their latest developments and application examples from

the field of the PHA’s.

The massively discussed presentation by Michael Stephen of Symphony about

– what Professor Greene (California State Univ. Chico) called oxo-fragmentable

plastics – was commented by Joe Greene: “Disney is an appropriate location

for such kind of presentations”. However, Mr. Stephens again was not able to

present any scientifically backed data to prove his claims.

During lunch on the first day, Eric Connell of Toyota shared with the delegates

his experience and thoughts about ‘Automotive Applications & Expectations of

Biobased Materials’. From the viewpoint of greenhouse gas reductions and

resource security, bioplastics are attractive as carbon neutral materials, but

Eric also pointed out the limitations that currently still exist for industrial

usage for automotive applications.

Dr. John Kristy, Professor at the University of Alabama in Huntsville explained

in an elaborated plenary session on the second day his findings about CO 2

and global warming. However, his ‘all-clear’ statement ‘all carbon dioxide

emissions – if reduced or not - do not affect the climate’ was not exactly agreed

to by all of the delegates.

bioplastics MAGAZINE will cover some of the most interesting talks, as well as

some of the really good student posters in the coming issues.

8 bioplastics MAGAZINE [02/09] Vol. 4


in Pack


conference, acco

exhibition, on ‘

Packaging’ on 3-

Orlando, Florida

about 30-40 from

delegates came

session to attend

industry experts

on ‘How plastic

the sustainab

Europe’ Profes

for example add

of automatic

mixed PLA /

Other present



Telles), Starc

(Tom Black, P

PSM) and b


Leslie Harty



covered the

PE and PE

claimed to


the 100%


such as E

EN 14855

could not

7 th International Symposium

Materials made from

renewable resources

9 th and 10 th September 2009

Main topics

· Fibre composites

· Biopolymer materials

· Bio-based adhesives

· Wood fibre materials

Accompanying exhibition

European Cooperation Forum

40 bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4


Event Calender

June 16-19, 2009

BioEnvironmental Polymer Society 16th Annual Meeting

McCormick Place Convention Center, Chicago, IL, USA

June 22-26, 2009

NPE2009: The International Plastics Showcase

McCormick Place

Chicago, Illinois USA

September 8-10, 2009

Biopackaging 2009

Copthorne Tara Hotel

Kensington, London, UK

September 9-10, 2009

7th Int. Symposium ‘Materials made

of Renewable Resources‘

Messe Erfurt

Erfurt / Germany

September 14-16, 2009

2 nd PLA Bottle Conference

hosted by bioplastics MAGAZINE

within the framework of drinktec

Munich / Germany

September 28 - October 01, 2009

4th Biopolymers Symposium 2009

Embassy Suites, Lakefront - Chicago Downtown

Chicago, Illinois USA

October 06-07, 2009

3. BioKunststoffe

Technische Anwendungen biobasierter Werkstoffe

Duisburg, Germany

October 26-27, 2009

Biowerkstoff Kongress 2009

within framework of AVK and COMPOSITES EUROPE

Neue Messe Stuttgart, Germany

November 10-11, 2009

4th European Bioplastics Conference

Ritz Carlton Hotel

Berlin, Germany

December 2-3, 2009

Dritter Deutscher WPC-Kongress

Maritim Hotel

Cologne, Germany

June 22-23, 2010

8th Global WPC and Natural Fibre Composites

Congress an Exhibition

Fellbach (near Stuttgart), Germany

You can meet us!

Please contact us in advance by e-mail.

bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4 41



In bioplastics MAGAZINE again and again

the same expressions appear that some of our

readers might (not yet) be familiar with. This

glossary shall help with these terms and shall

help avoid repeated explanations such as ‘PLA

(Polylactide)‘ in various articles.

Bioplastics (as defined by European Bioplastics

e.V.) is a term used to define two different

kinds of plastics:

a. Plastics based on renewable resources (the

focus is the origin of the raw material used)

b. à Biodegradable and compostable plastics

according to EN13432 or similar standards

(the focus is the compostability of the final

product; biodegradable and compostable

plastics can be based on renewable (biobased)

and/or non-renewable (fossil) resources).

Bioplastics may be

- based on renewable resources and biodegradable;

- based on renewable resources but not be

biodegradable; and

- based on fossil resources and biodegradable.

Amylopectin | Polymeric branched starch

molecule with very high molecular weight (biopolymer,

monomer is à Glucose).

Amyloseacetat | Linear polymeric glucosechains

are called à amylose. If this compound

is treated with ethan acid one product

is amylacetat. The hydroxyl group is connected

with the organic acid fragment.

Amylose | Polymeric non-branched starch

molecule with high molecular weight (biopolymer,

monomer is à Glucose).

Biodegradable Plastics | Biodegradable

Plastics are plastics that are completely assimilated

by the à microorganisms present a

defined environment as food for their energy.

The carbon of the plastic must completely be

converted into CO 2 during the microbial process.

For an official definition, please refer to

the standards e.g. ISO or in Europe: EN 1499

Plastics- Evaluation of compostability - Test

scheme and specifications. [bM 02/200 p.

34f, bM 01/200 p38].

Blend | Mixture of plastics, polymer alloy of at

least two microscopically dispersed and molecularly

distributed base polymers.

Carbon neutral | Carbon neutral describes a

process that has a negligible impact on total

atmospheric CO 2 levels. For example, carbon

neutrality means that any CO 2 released when

a plant decomposes or is burnt is offset by an

equal amount of CO 2 absorbed by the plant

through photosynthesis when it is growing.

Cellophane | Clear film on the basis of à cellulose.

Cellulose | Polymeric molecule with very high

molecular weight (biopolymer, monomer is

à Glucose), industrial production from wood

or cotton, to manufacture paper, plastics and


Compost | A soil conditioning material of

decomposing organic matter which provides

nutrients and enhances soil structure.

(bM 0/2008, 02/2009)

Compostable Plastics | Plastics that are biodegradable

under ‘composting’ conditions:

specified humidity, temperature, à microorganisms

and timefame. Several national

and international standards exist for clearer

definitions, for example EN 1499 Plastics

- Evaluation of compostability - Test scheme

and specifications [bM 02/200 p. 34f, bM

01/200 p38].

Composting | A solid waste management

technique that uses natural process to convert

organic materials to CO 2 , water and humus

through the action of à microorganisms

[bM 03/200].

Copolymer | Plastic composed of different


Cradle-to-Gate | Describes the system

boundaries of an environmental àLife Cycle

Assessment (LCA) which covers all activities

from the ‘cradle’ (i.e., the extraction of raw

materials, agricultural activities and forestry)

up to the factory gate

Cradle-to-Cradle | (sometimes abbreviated

as C2C): Is an expression which communicates

the concept of a closed-cycle economy,

in which waste is used as raw material (‘waste

equals food’). Cradle-to-Cradle is not a term

that is typically used in àLCA studies.

Cradle-to-Grave | Describes the system

boundaries of a full àLife Cycle Assessment

from manufacture (‘cradle’) to use phase and

disposal phase (‘grave’).

Fermentation | Biochemical reactions controlled

by à microorganisms or enyzmes (e.g.

the transformation of sugar into lactic acid).

Gelatine | Translucent brittle solid substance,

colorless or slightly yellow, nearly tasteless

and odorless, extracted from the collagen inside

animals‘ connective tissue.

Glucose | Monosaccharide (or simple sugar).

G. is the most important carbohydrate (sugar)

in biology. G. is formed by photosynthesis or

hydrolyse of many carbohydrates e. g. starch.

Humus | In agriculture, ‘humus’ is often used

simply to mean mature à compost, or natural

compost extracted from a forest or other

spontaneous source for use to amend soil.

Hydrophilic | Property: ‘water-friendly’, soluble

in water or other polar solvents (e.g. used

in conjunction with a plastic which is not waterresistant

and weatherproof or that absorbs

water such as Polyamide (PA).

Hydrophobic | Property: ‘water-resistant’, not

soluble in water (e.g. a plastic which is waterresistant

and weatherproof, or that does not

absorb any water such as Polethylene (PE) or

Polypropylene (PP).

LCA | Life Cycle Assessment (sometimes also

referred to as life cycle analysis, ecobalance,

and àcradle-to-grave analysis) is the investigation

and valuation of the environmental

impacts of a given product or service caused

(bM 01/2009).

42 bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4


Readers who know better explanations or who

would like to suggest other explanations to be

added to the list, please contact the editor.

[*: bM ... refers to more comprehensive article

previously published in bioplastics MAGAZINE)

Microorganism | Living organisms of microscopic

size, such as bacteria, funghi or yeast.

PCL | Polycaprolactone, a synthetic (fossil

based), biodegradable bioplastic, e.g. used as

a blend component.

PHA | Polyhydroxyalkanoates are linear polyesters

produced in nature by bacterial fermentation

of sugar or lipids. The most common

type of PHA is à PHB.

PHB | Polyhydroxyl buteric acid (better poly-

3-hydroxybutyrate), is a polyhydroxyalkanoate

(PHA), a polymer belonging to the polyesters

class. PHB is produced by micro-organisms

apparently in response to conditions of physiological

stress. The polymer is primarily a

product of carbon assimilation (from glucose

or starch) and is employed by micro-organisms

as a form of energy storage molecule to

be metabolized when other common energy

sources are not available. PHB has properties

similar to those of PP, however it is stiffer and

more brittle.

PLA | Polylactide or Polylactic Acid (PLA) is

a biodegradable, thermoplastic, aliphatic

polyester from lactic acid. Lactic acid is made

from dextrose by fermentation. Bacterial fermentation

is used to produce lactic acid from

corn starch, cane sugar or other sources.

However, lactic acid cannot be directly polymerized

to a useful product, because each polymerization

reaction generates one molecule

of water, the presence of which degrades the

forming polymer chain to the point that only

very low molecular weights are observed.

Instead, lactic acid is oligomerized and then

catalytically dimerized to make the cyclic lactide

monomer. Although dimerization also

generates water, it can be separated prior to

polymerization. PLA of high molecular weight

is produced from the lactide monomer by

ring-opening polymerization using a catalyst.

This mechanism does not generate additional

water, and hence, a wide range of molecular

weights are accessible (bM 01/2009).

Saccharins or carbohydrates | Saccharins or

carbohydrates are name for the sugar-family.

Saccharins are monomer or polymer sugar

units. For example, there are known mono-,

di- and polysaccharose. à glucose is a monosaccarin.

They are important for the diet and

produced biology in plants.

Sorbitol | Sugar alcohol, obtained by reduction

of glucose changing the aldehyde group

to an additional hydroxyl group. S. is used as a

plasticiser for bioplastics based on starch.

Starch | Natural polymer (carbohydrate) consisting

of à amylose and à amylopectin,

gained from maize, potatoes, wheat, tapioca

etc. When glucose is connected to polymerchains

in definite way the result (product) is

called starch. Each molecule is based on 300

-12000-glucose units. Depending on the connection,

there are two types à amylose and

à amylopectin known.

Starch (-derivate) | Starch (-derivates) are

based on the chemical structure of à starch.

The chemical structure can be changed by

introducing new functional groups without

changing the à starch polymer. The product

has different chemical qualities. Mostly the

hydrophilic character is not the same.

Starch-ester | One characteristic of every

starch-chain is a free hydroxyl group. When

every hydroxyl group is connect with ethan

acid one product is starch-ester with different

chemical properties.

Starch propionate and starch butyrate |

Starch propionate and starch butyrate can

be synthesised by treating the à starch with

propane or butanic acid. The product structure

is still based on à starch. Every based à

glucose fragment is connected with a propionate

or butyrate ester group. The product is

more hydrophobic than à starch.

Sustainable | An attempt to provide the best

outcomes for the human and natural environments

both now and into the indefinite future.

One of the most often cited definitions of sustainability

is the one created by the Brundtland

Commission, led by the former Norwegian

Prime Minister Gro Harlem Brundtland. The

Brundtland Commission defined sustainable

development as development that ‘meets the

needs of the present without compromising

the ability of future generations to meet their

own needs.’ Sustainability relates to the continuity

of economic, social, institutional and

environmental aspects of human society, as

well as the non-human environment).

Sustainability | (as defined by European

Bioplastics e.V.) has three dimensions: economic,

social and environmental. This has

been known as “the triple bottom line of

sustainability”. This means that sustainable

development involves the simultaneous pursuit

of economic prosperity, environmental

protection and social equity. In other words,

businesses have to expand their responsibility

to include these environmental and social

dimensions. Sustainability is about making

products useful to markets and, at the same

time, having societal benefits and lower environmental

impact than the alternatives currently

available. It also implies a commitment

to continuous improvement that should result

in a further reduction of the environmental

footprint of today’s products, processes and

raw materials used.

Thermoplastics | Plastics which soften or

melt when heated and solidify when cooled

(solid at room temperature).

Yard Waste | Grass clippings, leaves, trimmings,

garden residue.

bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4 43















Suppliers Guide

1. Raw Materials


Global Business Management

Biodegradable Polymers

Carl-Bosch-Str. 38

0 Ludwigshafen, Germany

Tel. +49-21 0 43 88

Fax +49-21 0 21 94

1.1 bio based monomers

Du Pont de Nemours International S.A.

2, Chemin du Pavillon, PO Box 0

CH 1218 Le Grand Saconnex,

Geneva, Switzerland

Tel. + 41 22 1 428

Fax + 41 22 1 00

1.2 compounds

Transmare Compounding B.V.

Ringweg , 04 JL

Roermond, The Netherlands

Tel. +31 4 34 900

Fax +31 4 34 910

1.3 PLA

Division of A&O FilmPAC Ltd

Osier Way, Warrington Road



Tel.: +44 844 33 088

Fax: +44 1234 13 221

1.4 starch-based bioplastics

BIOTEC Biologische

Naturverpackungen GmbH & Co. KG

Werner-Heisenberg-Straße 32

444 Emmerich




+49 2822 9210

+49 2822 1840

Tianan Biologic

No. 8 Dagang th Rd,

Beilun, Ningbo, China, 31800

Tel. +8- 48 8 2 0 2

Fax +8- 48 8 98 0

1.6 masterbatches


Avenue Melville Wilson, 2

Zoning de la Fagne

330 Assesse


Tel. + 32 83 0 211

Sukano Products Ltd.

Chaltenbodenstrasse 23

CH-8834 Schindellegi

Tel. +41 44 8

Fax +41 44 8 8

2. Additives /

Secondary raw materials

Sidaplax UK : +44 (1) 04 99

Sidaplax Belgium: +32 9 210 80 10

Plastic Suppliers: +1 8 38 418

3.1.1 cellulose based films



Cumbria CA 9BG


Contact: Andy Sweetman

Tel. +44 193 4149

Fax +44 193 4142

4. Bioplastics products

alesco GmbH & Co. KG

Schönthaler Str. -9

D-239 Langerwehe

Sales Germany: +49 2423 402 110

Sales Belgium: +32 9 220 1

Sales Netherlands: +31 20 03 10 |










BIOTEC Biologische

Naturverpackungen GmbH & Co. KG

Werner-Heisenberg-Straße 32

444 Emmerich


Tel. +49 2822 9210


+49 2822 1840

FKuR Kunststoff GmbH

Siemensring 9

D - 4 8 Willich

Tel. +49 214 921-0

Tel.: +49 214 921-1

Plantic Technologies Limited

1 Burns Road

Altona VIC 3018 Australia

Tel. +1 3 933 900

Fax +1 3 933 901

PSM Bioplastic NA

Chicago, USA


1.5 PHA

Du Pont de Nemours International S.A.

2, Chemin du Pavillon, PO Box 0

CH 1218 Le Grand Saconnex,

Geneva, Switzerland

Tel. + 41(0) 22 1 428

Fax + 41(0) 22 1 00

3. Semi finished products

3.1 films

Huhtamaki Forchheim

Herr Manfred Huberth

Zweibrückenstraße 1-2

91301 Forchheim

Tel. +49-9191 8130

Fax +49-9191 81244

Mobil +49-11 24394

Arkhe Will Co., Ltd.

19-1- Imaichi-cho, Fukui

918-812 Fukui, Japan

Tel. +81- 38 4 11

Fax +81- 38 4 1

Forapack S.r.l

Via Sodero, 43

030 Poggiofi orito (Ch), Italy

Tel. +39-08 1 93 03 2

Fax +39-08 1 93 03 2





Natur-Tec ® - Northern Technologies

4201 Woodland Road

Circle Pines, MN 014 USA

Tel. +1 3.22.00

Fax +1 3.22.4

Telles, Metabolix – ADM joint venture

0 Suffolk Street, Suite 100

Lowell, MA 0184 USA

Tel. +1-9 8 13 18 00

Fax +1-9 8 13 18 8

Maag GmbH

Leckingser Straße 12

840 Iserlohn


Tel. + 49 231 99-30

Fax + 49 231 99-9

Minima Technology Co., Ltd.

Esmy Huang, Marketing Manager

No.33. Yichang E. Rd., Taipin City,

Taichung County

411, Taiwan (R.O.C.)

Tel. +88(4)22 888

Fax +883(4)22 989

Mobil +88(0)982-829988

Skype esmy32

44 bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4

natura Verpackungs GmbH

Industriestr. -

48432 Rheine

Tel. +49 9 303-

Fax +49 9 303-42

Molds, Change Parts and Turnkey

Solutions for the PET/Bioplastic

Container Industry

284 Pinebush Road

Cambridge Ontario

Canada N1T 1Z

Tel. +1 19 24 920

Fax +1 19 24 921

10.2 Universities

Michigan State University

Department of Chemical

Engineering & Materials Science

Professor Ramani Narayan

East Lansing MI 48824, USA

Tel. +1 1 19 13

Suppliers Guide

Simply contact:

Tel.: +49-239-299-0

Stay permanently listed in the

Suppliers Guide with your company

logo and contact information.

For only 6,– EUR per mm, per issue you

can be present among top suppliers in

the field of bioplastics.


Via Fauser , 8

28100 Novara - ITALIA

Fax +39.0321.99.01

Tel. +39.0321.99.11

Pland Paper ®


2F, No., Singjhong Rd.,

Neihu District,

Taipei City 114, Taiwan, R.O.C.

Tel. + 88 - 2 - 293131

Fax + 88 - 2 - 29199

President Packaging Ind., Corp.

PLA Paper Hot Cup manufacture

In Taiwan,

Tel.: +88--0-40 ext.31

Fax: +88--0-40


Stubenwald-Allee 9

42 Bensheim, Deutschland

Tel. +49 21 01 0

Fax +49 21 01 10

7. Plant engineering

Uhde Inventa-Fischer GmbH

Holzhauser Str. 1 - 19

1309 Berlin


Tel. +49 (0)30 43

Fax +49 (0)30 43 99

8. Ancillary equipment

9. Services

Bioplastics Consulting

Tel. +49 211 484

University of Applied Sciences

Faculty II, Department

of Bioprocess Engineering

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Hans-Josef Endres

Heisterbergallee 12

3043 Hannover, Germany

Tel. +49 (0)11-929-2212

Fax +49 (0)11-929-2210

For Example:

Polymedia Publisher GmbH

Dammer Str. 112

410 Mönchengladbach


Tel. +49 211 484

Fax +49 211 3104

Sample Charge:

3mm x ,00 €

= 210,00 € per entry/per issue

Sample Charge for one year:

issues x 210,00 EUR = 1,20.00 €

The entry in our Suppliers Guide is

magnetic_148, 175.00 lpi 15.00° 75.00° 0.00° 45.00° 14.03.2009

bookable 10:13:31

for one year ( issues) and

Prozess CyanProzess MagentaProzess GelbProzess extends Schwarz automatically if it’s not canceled

three month before expiry.


35 mm

for Plastics






82 Näfels - Am Linthli 2


Tel. +41 18 44 99

Fax +41 18 44 98

6. Machinery & Molds

Marketing - Exhibition - Event

Tel. +49 239-299-0

10.1 Associations




• International Trade

in Raw Materials,

Machinery & Products

Free of Charge

• Daily News

from the Industrial Sector

and the Plastics Markets

• Current Market Prices

for Plastics.

FAS Converting Machinery AB

O Zinkgatan 1/ Box 103

2100 Ystad, Sweden

Tel.: +4 411 920

BPI - The Biodegradable

Products Institute

331 West th Street

Suite 41

New York, NY 10019, USA

Tel. +1-888-24-4






• Buyer’s Guide

for Plastics & Additives,

Machinery & Equipment,


and Services.

• Job Market

for Specialists and

Executive Staff in the

Plastics Industry

European Bioplastics e.V.

Marienstr. 19/20

1011 Berlin, Germany

Tel. +49 30 284 82 30

Fax +49 30 284 84 39

Up-to-date • Fast • Professional

Companies in this issue

Company Editorial Advert

A&O Filmpac 44

Alesco 44

Arkema 31

Arkhe Will 44

BASF ,22 44

Biograde 8

Biopolymer Network


Biotec 44

BMW 34

BPI 21, 2 4

Bunge Foods 30






Colorado School of Mines 32

Cray Valley


DuPont 22,32 44

European Bioplastics ,8 11,4

Evonik Industries 23

FAS Converting


FH Hannover


FKuR 1 2,44

Forapack 44

Fraunhofer UMSICHT


Georgia Pacific 31

Green Fuels






Huhtamaki 20 44




Innovia ,28 44


Iowa State University 23

IraPlast 30

Jamplast 23

JER 23

Kingfa 21

KTM Industries 18

Kureha 21

Lear EnviroTec


Leistritz 21

Lineo 34



Company Editorial Advert

Maag 44

Mann + Hummel


Marchant Manufacturing 28





Michigan State University 18 4

Minima Technologies 44

Mizuno 31

Nanobiomatters 21

Natura Verpackung




nova Institut

Novamont ,,8,12 4,48

Plastic Technologies 23





PolyOne 14,24 31,44

President Packaging


PSM Teinnovations 22 44


Recycled Carbon


Sandoz 18



Sidaplax 44

Södra 30

Sonnentor 28

Sphere-Biotec 8

SPI 21,22

STFI Packforsk 30

Sukano 44

Symphony 40



Teknor Apex


Telles 2,3 44,4

Tetra Pak

Tianan Biologic 14,3 ,44

Transmare 44

Uhde Inventa-Fischer


US Army Natick


Warwick University 34

WeiMon 29,4



Zejiang Hangzhou Xinfu


Next Issue

For the next issue of bioplastics MAGAZINE

(among others) the following subjects are scheduled:

Next issue:

Jul/Aug 03.08.2009

Editorial Focus:

Bottles / Labels / Caps

Non-Food-Sourced Bioplastics


Land Use for Bioplastics

Month Publ.-Date Editorial Focus (1) Editorial Focus (2) Basics Fair Specials

Sep/Oct 0.10.2009 Fibers / Textiles / Nonwovens Paper Coating

Basics of Starch Based


Nov/Dec 30.11.2009 Films / Flexibles / Bags Consumer Electronics Anaerobic Digestion

4 bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/09] Vol. 4

Salone del Gusto and Terra Madre 2008

Visitors of Salone del Gusto 180,000

Meals served at Terra Madre 26,000

Compost produced* kg 7,000

CO 2

saved kg 13,600

* data estimate – Novamont projection

The future,

with a different flavour:


Mater-Bi® means biodegradable

and compostable plastics made

from renewable raw materials.

Slow Food, defending good things,

from food to land.

For the “Salone del Gusto” and “Terra Madre”, Slow Food

has chosen Mater-Bi® for bags, shoppers, cutlery,

cups and plates; showing that good food must also

get along with the environment.

Sustainable development is a necessity for everyone.

For Novamont and Slow Food, it is already a reality.

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