MATERIALS: Renewable Polymer from Agricultural Waste

WEB EXCLUSIVE: Enso Plastics has introduced a renewable starch-based thermoplastic derived from potato farming waste. It can be used alone or blended with PP or PE.

WEB EXCLUSIVE: Enso Plastics, Mesa, Ariz., has introduced a starch-based thermoplastic derived from agricultural waste from potato farming. Called Renew, this high-heat material with proprietary processing that is said to remove nearly all of its moisture, is targeted to packaging applications that currently use PP, according to company president Danny Clark.


Enso Renew is said to be rapidly compostable and also marine degradable. A range of physical properties and degradability can be achieved by using it alone or blending it with PP or PE at anywhere from 10% to 70% renewable polymer. High loadings of Renew confer easy biodegradability but lower properties. At lower loadings of 10% to 30%, Renew is said to maintain much of the polyolefin’s physical properties while adding renewable content, but at the loss of rapid biodegradation rates.


The company was formed in 2008 and initially introduced a biodegradable additive, Enso Restore, for use in clear PET. Since then, Enso has added biodegradation promoters for PP, PE, PS, and PVC. Restore is a blend of organic materials that is added at a level of 1% to these standard resins. It has been used in commercial applications such as bags, bottles, film, rigid packaging and gloves.