MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA — Obtaining patents on its technology is helping an Australian manufacturer of compostable and biodegradable plastic resins becoming a leading player in the global environmentally sustainable packaging industry.
Melbourne-based, publicly listed Cardia Bioplastics Ltd. has just added another seven protection patents to its development procedures and intellectual property, bringing its total technology patents to 19. Another 42 patents are awaiting registration in various countries.
Cardia managing director Frank Glatz said in a phone interview from Hong Kong the patents are vital to Cardia getting a greater foothold in Europe, Asia and the United States. Without patents, many larger firms will not consider doing business with Cardia.
“This isn't a case of manufacturers testing the waters on sustainable packaging,” Glatz said. “It is a strategic shift that is seeing the manufacturing industry move away from oil-based plastics to resources based on materials that are environmentally sustainable.
“They are not just looking for suppliers. They are looking for a technology platform. The patents tell them we have the technology to deliver the materials they are after. They are our ticket to play. Without them we would lose what the Europeans call our freedom to practice.”
The company already has levied its expertise into new business, receiving an order for 7.8 million compostable bags for degradeable kitchen food waste and 50,000 kitchen bins from Australian waste management company Cleanaway.
Glatz said the seven new patents for the company's Compostable, Biohybrid and PPC-Starch products were granted in Japan, Australia, New Zealand and China. Cardia also has patents registered in the U.S. and South Africa.
The patents “mark an important milestone for Cardia Bioplastics,” Glatz said.
Cardia Bioplastics began in Melbourne in 2002 and now has manufacturing plants in Nanjing, China; and São Paulo, Brazil. It is headquartered in Melbourne.
Cardia Bioplastics and Melbourne-based privately held Stellar Films Group Pty. Ltd. have reached an agreement to merge, subject to shareholder and regulatory approval. The merger will create a publicly listed entity with annual sales of almost A$30 million (US$24.4 million).