Bioplastics firm Novamont SpA will double production of its Origo-Bi-brand biopolyesters by early 2018.
The expansion will increase Novamont's annual production capacity for Origo-Bi from 110 million pounds to 220 million pounds, officials with the Novara, Italy-based firm said in a news release.
The new production should be operational by April. The materials also will have a higher content of renewable raw materials, officials added.
Origo-Bi is used in Novamont's production of its Mater-Bi-brand biodegradable and compostable bioplastics. The biopolyester materials are made at a plant in Patrica, Italy, which Novamont acquired from Mossi & Ghisolfi Group.
Novamont in 2014 bought a majority stake in M&G's Mater-Biopolymer unit, and bought the remainder of the business in 2016. Company officials said that, together with the development of new chemicals and production processes, the Patrica site "has given a strong new impetus" to upstream integration of the Novamont production line.
Novamont had worked with Torona, Italy-based M&G at the site since 2009. M&G previously had used the site for PET resin production. Production of Origo-Bi began there in 2011.
Managing Director Catia Bastioli said in the release that doubling the production capacity of the Patrica plant "is a further step towards building a bioplastic and biochemical supply chain…that can deliver solutions to major environmental problems."
Novamont's main production site for Mater-Bi is in Terni, Italy. The materials are distributed worldwide. The firm employs 600 and posted sales of 170 million euros ($202 million) in 2016.