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Bioplastics

Bioplastics: Bacteria produce plastic

Bio-based plastics reduce dependency on fossil energies

Biotechnology offers great potential.

For example, the US Department of Energy’s vision for the United States is for a quarter of all chemicals to be based on natural materials by 2030. In plant engineering we mainly use biotechnology to produce chemicals from biomass – an important trend in times of increasingly scarce raw materials.

Biotechnology methods can already be used to manufacture various products on a large scale, including lactic acid, the starting material for polylactic acid (PLA), a biodegradable plastic. Carrier bags, refuse sacks, disposable tableware, packaging films, bottles – biodegradable plastics can be used for a wide range of applications.

By 2030, one quarter of all chemicals will be based on natural materials.

The link between laboratory and industry

The link between laboratory and industry

Bio-based plastics are extremely robust, frequently breathable, have a lower environmental impact than conventional plastics, and reduce dependency on fossil energies.

Our multi-purpose fermentation plant in Leuna serves as a link between laboratory and industry. Many biotechnology processes are being developed by start-ups, universities, or in the labs of small- and medium-sized enterprises. But the results cannot be transferred to industrial scale without an intermediate stage – and that requirement can now be met by the multi-purpose fermentation plant.

Successes:

  • Robust and breathable
  • Biodegradable
  • Lower environmental impact than conventional plastics
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