Genomatica just finished its survey of the mainstream chemical industry, in partnership with ICIS Chemical Business. One of the key themes in the survey, according to the company, is that there is still big optimism for renewables where 71% of the people surveyed believe that renewable chemicals will be in common use within five years.
The survey, fourth in a series they have conducted since 2009, revealed substantial advances for sustainability and renewable chemicals in general, for chemical producers, users (companies making products from basic and intermediate chemicals) and distributors. The survey covered topics including overall strategy and actions with regards to sustainable chemicals; current and planned use; commitment levels; customer interest; primary adoption factors; predictions of future adoption and use; and perceptions of industry leaders.
Here are other key takeaways from the survey:
■ Producers have become increasingly strategic: 46% say it’s “very important” to be a leader in sustainable chemicals. More than half see long-term economic advantage in using renewable feedstocks.
■ Producers taking action: 61% are showing a strong commitment to offer more sustainable chemicals and 34% are setting specific targets and benchmarking versus competition, suggesting they’re applying action-oriented management disciplines, rather than just considering an alternative.
■ Producers planning to deliver: 79% of producers offer or plan to offer more sustainable chemicals within a few years; that is up from 72% last time for a similar question. That is likely due to hearing stronger buying signals: producers say 91% of their customers express the same or greater interest in sustainable chemicals than a few years ago – up from 80%.
Also with the previous surveys where respondents were asked to list the companies that they think of as technology leaders for sustainable chemicals, Genomatica was rated #1, with Novozymes and BASF following in total positive responses.
One major concern amongst the respondents to the survey is legislation, which is said to be a key driver for sustainable chemicals as customers generally are not willing to pay for it.