First Renewable Capa Lactide for New Bioplastic Compounds

Perstorp's new biopolymer enhancer allows for the formulation of thermoplastics compounds with high renewable content and high mechanical properties.

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Sweden’s Perstorp has introduced what is said to be the world’s first renewable Capa for bioplastics. The concept builds on the company’s Capa Lactide technology, with a focus on developing copolymers for thermoplastics that can be used to make new bioplastic compounds.

 

Essentially, Capa is a biopolymer enhancer which enables a high renewable content in combination with many opportunities to develop products in the three fast-growing bioplastic segments--bags and films, packaging, and paper coatings. It has been shown to offer stability and compatibility, improved mechanical properties, flexibility at low temperatures, and biodegrability.

 

According to Linda Zellner, project manager for bioplastics, the renewable Capa concept enables freedom to design polymers that are flexible or hard, transparent or crystalline, tough or rigid and with a targeted melting point and polarity. “Market indications show that these products are likely to deliver what many customers are looking for in terms of bio-based content and performance. The challenge on the market has been to combine performance and biodegradability of the end applications. With our renewable Capac concept, we are redrawing the map by enabling products with high performance properties without compromising sustainability,” she says.

 

This effort will now be supported by Perstorp’s full industrial production and pilot facilities in Warrington, U.K. and its modern Swedish innovation center in Perstorp for bioplastic formulations, with global availability planned. “With these capabilities, we can develop and test concepts and scale up production to an industrial level”, says Zellner. The company’s initial step is to team up with industry partners to develop these products jointly to ensure the right performance is achieved that meets their needs.

 

Renewable Capa has been evaluated both in terms of compostability and bio-based content and is also certified as bio-based by the independent Belgian certification body Vincotte. At its 2015 conference, the European Bioplastics Association put the estimated annual growth of the bioplastics market at 20%.