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A 20% increase in 5 years expected for the global bioplastics market

The twelfth conference of European Bioplastics, the European association representing the interests of the bioplastics industry in Europe, took place on 28 and 29 November in Berlin. According to industry players, the global bioplastics market is expected to grow by 20% by 2022. This growth, partly due to the efforts of manufacturers to increase their production capacity to meet consumer demand, is also due to the launch of new biopolymers.

PLA (polylactic acids) have excellent barrier properties and could replace polystyrene, polypropylene or ABS (Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene) in high performance applications. Their production capacity is expected to increase by 50% over the next five years. PHA (polyhydroxyalkanoates), 100% bio-based and biodegradable polymers also have interesting mechanical and physical properties. Other non-biodegradable but biosourced materials such as bio PE, bio PET, PP of plant origin should see their production continue to increase as developments and innovations are made. For example, PEF (polyethylene furanoate) is a 100% bio-based polymer, comparable to PET but with superior thermal and barrier properties.

Major brands are also investing in this choice to develop more sustainable products: Nestlé Waters and Danone, for example, have set up a partnership to launch a 100% bio-based PET bottle by 2020.

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