dispatches from European Bioplastics conference

Bioplastics industry sets out key messages

By Joseph James Whitworth

- Last updated on GMT

European Bioplastics conference in Brussels
European Bioplastics conference in Brussels

Related tags European commission

End of life options including biodegradability, compostability and recyclability and ensuring Europe remains competitive where two themes from the first day of the European Bioplastics conference.

The first day of the international conference organized by European Bioplastics was held today (Tuesday) in Brussels.

"Bioplastics - Driving a Resource Efficient Europe" is the ninth edition.

It was opened by Helmut Maurer, Directorate-General for Environment of the European Commission and Axel Singhofen MP of the Greens/European Free Alliance at the European Parliament's Environment Committee.

Bioplastics growth

Francois de Bie, chairman of European Bioplastics, made the welcoming remarks highlighting seven key points on bioplastics.

Among these were its acceptance by brand owners such as Danone, Coca-Cola and Tetra Pak, production to grow by 400% by 2017 globally, helping to divert organic waste from landfill and the industry not being in competition with food and feed.

There was no better place to talk about policy than in Brussels– which is exactly what Virginia Janssens, managing director of EUROPEN did, focusing around the Packaging and Packaging Waste Directive and Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR).

Feedstock choices

Alternative feedstocks to produce bioplastics were also a topic with Molly Moore from Mango Materials (interview coming soon) explaining its concept of using methane gas.

Eric Sievers from Ethanol Europe also gave an insight going from non-food biomass to bioplastics.

Patrick Zimmermann, director of marketing and sales at FKuR, said how different types of bioplastics were being used in one application. Such as beverage bottles from bio-PET, the stretch film from green PE and wooden or green PE pallets.

Thomas Klausli, chief marketing officer at Ava Biochem BSL, told attendees how a breakthrough in the industrial scale production of 5-Hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF) opens up a wide variety of applications.

End of life was also a key topic with Dr Gerold Breuer, head of marketing and business development at EREMA, stressed the importance of increasing the recycling rate and the content of recyclate in products.

Related news

Meanwhile, BioAmber has signed an exclusive supply agreement for bio-based succinic acid with Oleon.

The industrial biotechnology company said that under the terms of the contract, which runs from 2014 to the end of 2018, BioAmber Sarnia, a joint venture with Mitsui & Co., will supply Oleon with bio-based succinic acid for the development and production of succinate lubricants.

Oleon, a division of Sofiproteol, is developing a line of succinic acid based lubricants that target 100% carbon renewability. 

It is combining bio-succinic acid and (bio-based) alcohols to produce the line of lubricants for industrial uses requiring high performance, biodegradability and renewable content. 

BioAmber will supply Oleon from its Sarnia plant, which is expected to be completed in early 2015 and have an initial capacity of 30,000 tons per year.  

Related topics Processing & Packaging