Bioplastics – An overview by

  • Analysis
  • 18-October-2015

Bioplastics – An overview

Due to the heinous effects of normal plastics on the environment and the fact that they are non-biodegradable, bioplastics have come a long way as former pose a dangerous threat to our environment. Bioplastics are plastics made from renewable biomass degradable sources, such as vegetable fats and oils, starches etc. Not all bioplastics are always degradable though. They are referred to as biobased polymers as well.

Applications of Bioplastics
Bioplastics are widely used today in packaging various items, as polybags, in production of cutlery, pots, straws, bag, trays, to name a few among hundred others. In the field of electronics they are used to make mobile phone casings, carpet fibers etc. Even in medical and agricultural field bioplastics have created their own niche of usability.

Table 1: Bio Plastics Market

                            Particulars                              Description
            Factors affecting the Market
  • Because of environmental concerns of using normal plastics that degrade the environment, high demand of bio plastics have set its market on an uphill trajectory.
  • Its magnificent medicinal uses such as (Polylactic acid) PLA and high sustainability in packaging industry have catapulted bio plastics market across the globe.
    Region-Wise Distribution across globe
  • European region captures the major share of the bio-plastic consumption across the globe.
  • A double digit growth is anticipated for this market in the next six years.
  • The rising demand of polyesters and polyolefin’s in Asia Pacific region shall be the growth driving factors for the bio plastics market.
Major Players

BASF- It is the largest chemical producer in the world and is headquartered in Ludwigshafen, Germany. BASF stands for Badische Anilin- und Soda-Fabrik. Harbored in more than 80 countries it had revenue of almost 75 billion Euros. This company is a pioneer in manufacturing bioplastics. Ecoflex is its most famous brand in bioplastics which has a high content of polylactic acid and is made of high performance materials.

The Dow Chemical Co.- Commonly referred to as Dow, this company is an American chemical corporation headquartered in Michigan. In terms of revenue it is the second-largest chemical manufacturer in the world and by market capitalization standards, the third-largest chemical company. This company produces various types of plastics. Basic, performance and bioplastics are a few.

Novamont- This is the only bioplastic producing company based in Italy. It is based in Novara and enjoys a turnover of 89 million Euros. It produces thermoplastic biodegradable which is called Mater-Bi from starch, corn, wheat and potato, at the plant situated in Terni.

Toray Industries- Toray Industries, Inc. is headquartered in Japan. It is a multinational corporation which deals in industrial products like organic synthetic and polymer chemistry, and biochemistry. Its founding sector areas were plastics and chemicals. This company produces highest number of petrochemical products in terms of volumes annually in the world. Biobased products are specialities of this company. Toray recently succeeded in making the world's first fully renewable biobased PET fiber.

NatureWorks LLC- It’s a U.S. based company, headquartered in Minnetonka, Minnesota, that produces bioplastics manufactured entirely from plant resources as against the normal petroleum derived plastic. Polymers in this company are made from carbon found in corn starch to make polylactic acid (PLA) which is distributed worldwide under the brand name Ingeo, whose one billion pounds were sold in 2013.

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