Bioplastic market set to soar, but support needed

Published: October 11, 2012 6:00 am ET

Related to this story

Topics Sustainability, Materials, Suppliers

BERLIN (Oct. 11, 1 p.m. ET) — The global market for bioplastics is expected to grow way beyond earlier forecasts as advances in production technologies render previous predictions “obsolete.”

Berlin-based European Bioplastics, an industry association, said in its annual report that the current volume figure of 1.2 million metric tons is likely to grow fivefold between now and 2016.

Bio-based PET is likely to be a big contributor to this figure, with capacity expected to grow 10 times during the next four years.

However, policy makers were urged to back words of support for the sector with “concrete measures,” lest production drifts to emerging markets.

Driving the capacity increase will be the bio-based, non-biodegradable bioplastics group, the association’s report said, “especially the so-called ‘drop-in’ solutions,” such as biobased versions of polyethylene and PET.

“Leading the field is partially biobased PET, which is already accounting for approximately 40 percent of the global bioplastics production capacity. Partially biobased PET will continue to extend this lead to more than 4.6 million metric tons by 2016.”

European Bioplastics said this would correspond to 80 percent of the total bioplastics production capacity. Following PET is biobased PE at 250,000 metric tons, constituting more than 4 percent of the total production capacity, the organization said.

Hasso von Pogrell, managing director of European Bioplastics, said: “The enormous growth makes allowance for the constantly increasing demand for sustainable solutions in the plastics market.

“Eventually, bioplastics have achieved an established position in numerous application areas, from the packaging market to the electronics sector and the automotive industry.”

European Bioplastics warned of what it called a “disturbing trend”: the geographic distribution of production capacities away from Europe and towards South America and Asia.

Andy Sweetman, the trade association’s chairman, said: “European Bioplastics invites European policy makers to convert their declared interest into concrete measures.

“We are seeing many general supportive statements at EU level and in the member states. There is, however, a lack of concrete measures.

“If Europe wants to profit from growth at all levels of the value chain in our industry, it is high time the corresponding decisions are made.”


Comments

Bioplastic market set to soar, but support needed

Published: October 11, 2012 6:00 am ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

Milacron commits $30 million to investment in India

August 20, 2014 5:42 pm ET

MUMBAI — Cincinnati-based Milacron LLC plans to invest $30 million over the next three years in India. The investments will double capacity at...    More

Image

Automakers look under the hood for the next lightweighting opportunities

August 20, 2014 1:06 pm ET

The automotive industry's current favorite target for lightweighting efforts is the powertrain, according to a recent survey.    More

Image

GameDay Challenge expands the competition to the recycling bin

August 20, 2014 10:23 am ET

GameDay Recycling Challenge is returning this year as college football stadiums will compete to see which school produces the least amount of waste...    More

Image

Pactiv selling building products unit to Ireland's Kingspan

August 19, 2014 3:54 pm ET

Irish building material manufacturer Kingspan Group plc is acquiring the insulation business of Lake Forest, Ill.-based Pactiv Building Products for...    More

Image

Flexible film waste-to-oil pilot project continuing in California

August 19, 2014 3:19 pm ET

A recent decision to discontinue operations at a plastics waste-to-oil site in Portland, Ore., is not impacting a pilot program aimed at hard-to-recyc...    More

Market Reports

Thermoformed Packaging 2014 Market Review & Outlook North America

This in-depth report analyzes economic and market trends, legislative/regulatory activity impacting supply and demand, business opportunities and threats, materials pricing, manufacturing technology, as well as growth strategies being implemented by thermoformed packaging companies.

Learn more

Pipe, Profile & Tubing Extrusion in North America 2014

U.S. demand for extruded plastics is expected to grow by 3 percent in 2014, with PVC remaining the largest segment.

Plastic pipe will post the strongest gains through 2018, continuing to take market share from competing materials in a range of markets.

Our latest market report provides in-depth analysis of current trends and their financial impact on the pipe, profile and tubing extrusion industry in North America.

Learn more

2014 Injection Molding Industry Report

GROWTH, OPPORTUNITY IN SIGHT FOR INJECTION MOLDERS IN 2014

In the wake of the economic turbulence earlier in this decade, molders today find themselves in much better shape. Molders are gaining a competitive advantage by investing in people, equipment and seeking inroads into new markets on a global scale.

Growth in the injection molding industry is going to be driven by low financing costs and a continued move to reshore some business.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

September 10, 2014 - September 12, 2014Plastics Caps & Closures 2014

January 14, 2015 - January 14, 2015Plastics in Automotive

February 4, 2015 - February 6, 2015Plastics News Executive Forum 2015

More Events