BIOPLASTICSThe bioplastics market
The market for biobased and/or biodegradable plastics is constantly evolving. After several years of slow progress, industrial and societal awareness has enabled the market to take a new step and enter a much greater growth phase. This will be driven by an explosion in the supply of biodegradable polymers which should ultimately bring total production capacity to 7.5 MT per year, i.e. 3 times more than at present.
Biobased and/or biodegradable polymers should then reach more than 2% of the world’s polymer production capacity.
The polymers representing the largest market shares today are PBAT and PLA, followed closely by starch-based blends and biobased versions of PE and PA (see links). Developments in the upcoming years should finally see an increase in the supply of PHAs.
It is also not surprising to see that most of the bioplastics market is focused on packaging applications, flexible and rigid, which account for more than half of the outlets today.