News Roundup

Weekly News Roundup

So many news, so little time. I’m still working on an oleochemical post and in the meantime, something is brewing in the cleaning products market that needs to be investigated. Stay tune! In the meantime, here are this week’s news roundup (which seems to be focusing on bioplastic these days…)

H&M bans PFCs

Retailer H&M Group will start banning the use of perfluorinated compounds (PFCs) in their global supply chain starting January 1, 2013. PFCs are used to for water repellent function mainly on outer wear garments, but also on shower curtains, tents, etc. The company said alternative chemical is being used that has good environmental and health properties.

Ingeo bioplastic stable in landfill

A peer-reviewed article in the journal of Polymer Degradation and Stability concludes that Ingeo biopolymer is stable in landfills with no statistically significant quantity of methane released. The tests according to ASTM D5526 and D5511 standards simulated a century’s worth of landfill conditions.

Cardia bioplastic in PC package

A multinational consumer goods company has commenced in-market validation of their personal care products packaging made from Cardia’s renewable Biohybrid resin technology. The undisclosed company is collaborating with Cardia in order to improve the environmental profile of their product packaging.

Solegear Bioplastics teams with NRC

Canada-based Solegear Bioplastics has partnered with the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) to jointly develop new bioplastic using their respective proprietary formulations and technologies. Solegear has developed proprietary bioplastics formulations under the brand name Polysole®, a 100% biobased high-performance biodegradable polymer compound.

Cereplast opens in India

US-based bioplastic producer Cereplast has opened a corporate office in Hyderabad, capital of the Indian state Andhra Pradesh. The new office will provide technical support, marketing support and business development. The office is located within the offices of A.R.M.Y Marketing Services Ltd., Cereplast’s partner in India.

Biome sells bioplastic business

UK-based company Biome Technologies is selling its 50% stake in joint venture bioplastic manufacturing business Biotec Holding GmbH to co-owner Sphere S.A. for GBP 5.2m ($8.4m). Biotec was acquired in 2005 and provides manufactured bioplastic product to Biome Bioplastics in addition to collaborating in the development of new materials. The disposal of the bioplastic business will allow Biome to concentrate on its other division Stanelco RF Technologies that manufactures and services advanced radio frequency systems.

Purac alternatives to PS, PP, ABS

Purac is now offering polylactic acid (PLA)-based plastic solutions as alternatives to polystyrene (PS), polypropylene (PP) and acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) in applications where heat resistance is a key requirement. The company said its Puralact L&D based homopolymers are the key ingredient to the improved PLA resin heat performance. The technology can increase the heat stability of PLA to the range of 80-180 degree celsius.

Arizona Chemical partners with Nexeo

Arizona Chemical has entered an exclusive deal with Nexeo Solutions to distribute its SYLFAT tall oil fatty acids (TOFA) and SYLVATAL distilled tall oil (DTO) in the US. TOFA that is used in a wide range of applications including alkyd resins, dimer acids, surfactants, cleaners, oil field chemicals, lubricant esters and other chemical derivatives. DTO combines the advantages of fatty and rosin acids, and are used in applications like metal working fluids, oil field chemicals, soaps, cleaners and alkyd resins.

Praxair buys Honeywell’s CO2 byproduct

Praxair has signed a 15-year deal with Honeywell Resins & Chemicals for the purchase of carbon dioxide, a byproduct of Honeywell’s caprolactam facility in Hopewell, VA. The carbon dioxide will be purified and liquefied at Praxair’s new plant at the Honeywell site which is scheduled to start up in the third quarter of 2013. The plant is expected to produce 450 tons per day which will be used primarily in food freezing and processing as well as beverage applications.

VG Energy markets oil yield-enhancer

Viral Genetics’ subsidiary VG Energy has contracted Eno Research Chemicals & Custom Synthesis Group for production of its LipidMax lipid enhancement compound for use in increasing oil yields from algae, corn, palm, and other oil-producing plants. The oil yield increase is thought to provide a possible catalyst for changing the economic feasibility for algal-derived biofuels. Similar cost-reduction effects in plant oils used as food, nutraceuticals and cosmetics is also an expected benefit.

Yparex markets biobased adhesive

The Netherlands-based Yparex B.V. has developed and is now commercializing a drop-in bio-based adhesive tie layer for multilayer packaging films. Adhesive tie layers are special polymers used in very-popular multilayer films that bond together dissimilar resins that otherwise would not adhere to each other. Such films are then used in rigid or flexible barrier-packaging structures. Traditional barrier resins made include polyamide and ethylene vinyl alcohol.

OriginOil’s green fracking solution

US algae developer OriginOil licenses its Clea-Frack process under private label to firms offering oil and gas water treatment solutions. OriginOil’s Clean-Frack process is based on the company’s Solids Out of Solution™ technology that efficiently removes oils, suspended solids, insoluble organics and bacteria from produced or ‘frac flowback’ water, on a continuous flow basis and without the use of chemicals. The process originally developed for algae harvesting, can separate 98% of hydrocarbons from a sample of oil well ‘frac flowback’ water. The Clean-Frack process is designed to be the first stage in multi-step processes for cleaning and treating contaminated water from oil and gas wells.

BIO-TIC project formed

The European Union-funded 3-year project BIO-TIC has been established this month with the aim to identify innovation hurdles including technological bottlenecks, market entry and institutional barriers as well as funding challenges within the industrial biotechnology market in Europe. The final aim of the project will be to draw up a blueprint document with a comprehensive set of policy recommendations for overcoming the identified innovation hurdles within a selection of European business and societal opportunities. In addition, the project will develop and market test a methodology to measure the growth of biomass use and industrial biotechnology in the market as metric to evaluate the impact of the project.

Nexterra opens biomass CHP system

Nexterra Systems, the University of British Columbia and GE has completed an energy-from-renewable-waste combined heat and power (CHP) system located at UBC’s Vancouver campus. The system combines Nexterra’s gasification and syngas conditioning technologies with GE’s Jenbacher internal combustion engines, which will produce 2 MW (megawatts) of electricity that will offset UBC’s existing power consumption, enough to power approximately 1,500 homes. The Nexterra system will also generate 3 MW of thermal energy, enough steam to displace up to 12 percent of UBC’s natural gas consumption.

Terrabon files for Bankruptcy

Houston, US-based Terrabon has filed for bankruptcy protection where under the proceedings, the company’s operations cease and a trustee will be tasked with liquidating the company’s assets. The company’s MixAlco technology converts biomass to gasoline, while its SoluPro technology is a bio-products process that converts protein-bearing waste material into animal feed and commercial adhesives. These technologies are exclusively licensed to Terrabon by the Teas A&M University System through its Office of Technology Commercialization.

About Doris de Guzman

Will Green Chemistry save the world or is it hype? Doris de Guzman examines alternative processing, new technology, R&D and other sustainability initiatives aimed at preventing pollution; replacing ingredients; and using renewable feedstocks in Green Chemistry. She has been covering the oleochemicals market for 15 years and spread her beat to inorganics, biofuels and green chemistry.


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