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Global bioplastics production capacity will more than double from 2010 to 2015

May 25/2011

(Packaging Essentials) -- Capacity is predicted to pass the one million tonne mark already in 2011, according to a current study presented by the industry association European Bioplastics in cooperation with the University of Applied Sciences and Arts of Hanover at the interpack trade fair in Dusseldorf.

From a figure of around 700 KT in 2010, the production capacity for bioplastics will increase to a predicted 1.7 million tonnes by 2015. The current year will see capacity pass an important threshold: the first half of 2011 already shows production capacity exceeding 900 KT. The million tonne mark is close, and will likely be passed by the bioplastics industry within this year.

A further change is evident in the composition of global production volume. In 2010, the bio- plastics branch primarily produced biodegradable materials, totalling around 400 KT (compared to 300 KT of biobased commodity plastics). This ratio will be reversed in the coming years despite overall growth.

Essential to this rapid growth is the swift expansion of bioplastics into an ever-increasing number of applications. From packaging to car manufacture to toys, carpets and electronic components bioplastics are in demand as never before. The strongly growing group of dura- ble biobased bioplastics appeals strongly to the packaging market, for example. Several large brand producers such as Danone and Coca-Cola have brought products to market.

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