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Sustainability as economic driver; bioplastics in full bloom

In its recently published study on the bioplastics industry, market research institute Ceresana predicts that global bioplastic revenues will exceed $2.8 billion by 2018; an average annual growth rate of 17. 8%.  Strong growth will be seen particularly in the Asia-Pacific region and in South America.

predicts that global bioplastic revenues will exceed $2.8 billion by 2018; an average annual growth rate of 17. 8%.  Strong growth will be seen particularly in the Asia-Pacific region and in South America.

Demand in the individual types of bioplastics  will also show significant regional differences. While PLA demand in North America is projected to rise by 12% per year, it will soar by almost 17% per year in the countries of the Asia-Pacific.
In 2010, demand was highest for by starch-based plastics, followed by polylactic acid (PLA). Other bio-based plastics (PHA/PHB, cellulose, PBS), as well as fossil fuel-based biodegradable plastics accounted for just less than 17% of global demand.

Right now, biodegradable plastics dominate the bioplastics market, roughly accounting for 92% of all bioplastics used. Non-biodegradable plastics based on renewable resources, however, are forecast to increase their market share from 8% in 2010 to more than 47% by 2018.

Factors such as product innovation, new production capacities, legislative changes, and growing environmental awareness will impact the market over the coming years. Lower prices, as a result of technical progress in production and significant growth in capacities will further boost the competitiveness of bioplastics against conventional plastics. New products also provide prospects for growth, as extending the product range will allow bioplastics to be used in an increasing number of application areas.

The study further analyzes how bioplastics consumption will develop in the individual markets, identifying manufacturers of bags and sacks as the most important buyers worldwide.

Loose-fill ranks second, closely followed by packaging and films. The automotive, electronic and other industries and applications, e.g. catering products, hygiene products, textiles, and sports & leisure products, account for just less than one fifth of global demand.

TAGS: Materials
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