Bioplastic, Company initiatives, Partnership, Products

BASF expands compostable plastic in the US

BASF is now ready to expand production of its ecovio® compostable plastics, this time in North America via a recent partnership announcement with Mississippi, US-based Heritage Plastics.

Production of ecovio® will begin this September at the Heritage facility in Picayune, Mississippi. How much compounding capacity does Heritage has for ecovio®? The blog does not yet know. What I know is that Heritage already manufactures its own biodegradable polymers under the brand Bio ™ 970, a compound based on a blend of high purity mineral (10%) and biodegradable resins that include an aliphatic/aromatic co-polyester.

ecovio® contains ecoflex®, a compostable petroleum-based polybutylene adipate co-terephthalate (PBAT) resin, and combined with polylactic acid (PLA), a corn-based biodegradable polymer. ecoflex® has the properties of conventional polyethylene but is fully biodegradable under industrial composting conditions.

BASF said the ecovio® products will be exclusively marketed and available for purchase from BASF while maintaining a production partnership with Heritage. ecovio® products have been available commercially in the US, Canada and Mexico since 2007 with production taking place at its Ludwigshafen, Germany facility.

In late 2011, BASF expanded its ecoflex® production in Ludwigshafen from 14 ktpa to 74 ktpa. BASF purchases PLA for ecovio®. BASF can actually tailor blend the two components, ecoflex® and PLA to obtain softer or stiffer formulations of ecovio® depending on what customer wants.

The blog also does not know BASF”s compounding capacity for ecovio® in Ludwigshafen.

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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