Strong growth of the bioplastics in the US
Demand for degradable plastics in the Unites States is forecast to grow by 11 per cent a year to be worth US$380 millions by 2014 thanks to increased capacity, falling prices and improved performance of materials, said a new report.
Key players such as Cargill-owned NatureWorks and Novamount ensure capacity growth so that output reaches 147 millions kg by the end of the period, said The Freedonia Group.
Efforts to reduce both pollution and reliance on oil-based plastics, as well as continued consumer demand for sustainable and eco-friendly packaging will also spur growth, said the study entitled “Degradable Plastic to 2014″. The report suggests the success that appeared to elude the sector for so long could finally be realised as growing capacity, the increased use of blends and potential oil-price volatility all combined to boost demand. “Prices for degradable plastics are expected to become increasingly competitive, which should open up new market opportunities,” said the research.
Performance of the bioplastics is also improving thanks to the use of more polymerisation, blending techniques and higher yield processing technology, it added.
Polylactic acid (PLA) will grow at the fastest pace through 2014, driven by a more competitive price structure and greater availability. Myriad opportunities are expected, particularly in fiber applications such as nonwovens. Starch-based plastics will have a good outlook as a result of improved resin blends and applications in such areas as compostable yard and kitchen bags, as well as foodservice items such as plates, bowls and cutlery. Demand for polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs) will more than double, driven by an increase in the availability of PHA plastics and products. Opportunities are expected in areas such as films and molded containers. Slower growth is expected for photodegradable films such as ring carriers due to a maturing beverage container segment and competition from shrink film and paperboard packaging.
The companies which have been analyzed by this market study are:
Akzo Nobel NV
American Excelsior Company
Archer-Daniels-Midland Company (ADM)
Clondalkin Group Holdings Limited
D&W Fine Pack
Dow Chemical Company
DuPont de Nemours
DURECT Corporation 2
Eastman Chemical Company
Innovia Films Limited
KTM Industries Incorporated
Kuraray Company Limited
Ningbo Tianan Biologic Material Company Limited
Plantic Technologies Limited
Reynolds Packaging Group
Rodenburg Biopolymers BV
Sealed Air Corporation
Sekisui Chemical Company Limited
Storopack Hans Reichenecker GmbH
Toyota Motor Corporation