Bioplastics production capacity is set to increase from around 1.6 million tons in 2013 to approximately 6.7 million tons by 2018, according to the results of European Bioplastics’ annual market data update, presented on December 3, 2014, at the 9th European Bioplastics Conference in Brussels.
The data was compiled in cooperation with its respected scientific partners, the Institute for Bioplastics and Biocomposites (IfBB, University of Applied Sciences and Arts Hannover, Germany) and the nova-Institute (Hürth, Germany)
“The market is predicted to grow by more than 400% in the mid-term,” says European Bioplastics chairman François de Bie.
Bio-based, non-biodegradable plastics, such as bio-based polyethylene (PE) and bio-based Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET), are gaining the most in terms of production.
Polylactide (PLA) is a major growth driver in the field of bio-based and biodegradable plastics.
Furthermore, renewable and compostable plastics produced locally are likely to benefit from the new EU directive on the reduction of shopping bags.
Flexible and rigid packaging remains by far the leading application field for bioplastics.
With a view to regional capacity development, Asia will expand its role as major production hub.
Most of the currently planned projects are being implemented in Thailand, India and China.
About 75% of bioplastics will be produced in Asia by 2018.
In comparison, Europe at the forefront of research and development will be left with about 8% of the production capacities.
Additionally, other regions of the world, such as the US and Asia, invest into measures ‘closer to market introduction’, which results in a faster market development than in Europe.
“We urge the EU legislators to consider and make efficient use of the immense environmental, economic growth and job creation potential of our industry. In this context, the Circular Economy Package should remain in the Commission’s 2015 Work Programme and the Waste Target Review should proceed as planned,” concluded de Bie.