Ingeo News: June 2023

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In today’s Ingeo News:

  • Top 3 Trends by Matt Romberger
  • BioHome3D - the first 100% biobased 3D printed home made with Ingeo
  • A WIN for composting industry in Minnesota
  • NatureWorks and Jabil bring PLA 3110P to Rapid + TCT
  • PepsiCo’s food divisions open Greenhouse Learning Lab for compostables

Top 3 Industry Trends

By Matt Romberger, VP of Sales and Marketing, NatureWorks

Halfway through 2023 we’re seeing brands, NGOs, and governments evaluate the sustainability of plastics against multiple criteria including carbon impact, biobased content, health and safety, and the ability to be recycled or composted. Let’s explore some of the top trends driving interest in biomaterials and how we see them accelerating growth in the market.

1. Adoption of Biobased Content

A long declared tenant of a circular economy is to decouple materials from the use of fossil feedstocks. With over 381 million metric tons of plastic produced annually, implementing this tenant continues to be a challenging journey. The use of biopolymers made from annually renewable resources can be a key driver in reducing the use of non-renewable, petrochemical plastics while also helping companies achieve their ambitious carbon footprint reduction targets especially as biopolymers like Ingeo PLA an average carbon footprint 73% smaller than plastics made from fossil resources.

2. Quantifying Greenhouse Gas Reductions of Food Waste Diversion to Compost

A recent study published by the EPA noted the growing amount of food waste generated in the US and how, at 21.6%, it is the single largest component of the municipal solid waste (MSW) disposed of in landfills. Diverting food waste to compost can have an impact on climate change, as more than 15% of total U.S. human-caused methane emissions come from landfills. The report also notes that if we divert 25% more food waste to compost, we can reduce associated greenhouse gas emissions by 30%. Compostable packaging is increasingly used to help increase food waste diversion rates and have a measurable impact on methane emissions reduction.

3. Safety of Materials

The evolution to more sustainable materials for packaging has put a spotlight on evaluating impacts to people as well as the environment. New certifications like GreenScreen set a safety standard for products like food serviceware ensuring they do not contain per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) plus thousands of other chemicals of concern that are known for negative impacts to human health. The certification is designed for use by governments, companies, and certification standards to encourage the design and use of inherently safer chemical ingredients. Certifiers of compostable products have, in fact, already adopted bans on products made using PFAS in order to protect the safety of finished compost. 

We continue to see the demand for safe, low carbon, biobased products rapidly increase. To meet the market interest, we have expanded production capacity at our Blair, NE plant, and we’re in the process of building a new fully integrated plant in Thailand. The potential for growth is exciting, and we look forward to sharing some new applications that we have been working on to help the market capitalize on these trends. 

A Big Idea

Ingeo PLA in the first 100% biobased BioHome3D

This project was a hub and spoke program by the University of Maine Advanced Structures and Composites Center, Oak Ridge National Labs, and NatureWorks.

Click of the Month

A WIN for composting industry in Minnesota

Mislabeled food service items and bags are the most common contaminants ending up at composting facilities. The Minnesota Composting Council helped reintroduce the Environment & Natural Resources Omnibus bill for the 2023 legislative session and Gov. Waltz signed it. The MN Stat. 325E.046 Standards for Labeling Plastics Bags will apply to food serviceware and other packaging claiming compostability.

Quick Hits

Dyze Design

Dyze Design introduced an exciting additive manufacturing project that highlights the potential of multi-axis non-planar toolpathing techniques. The printing material used in the project is Ingeo Biopolymer 3D850.

Zero Waste Weekend - UGA

NatureWorks helped consult on successful Zero Waste Weekend student-run campaign at the University of GA. All three games exceeded the pilot’s target of 90+% waste diversion and almost 60% was sent to the Athens-Clarke County Composting Facility.

What We're Reading

Recent Events

Rapid + TCT

May 2 - 4 | Chicago, IL

NatureWorks and Jabil promoted the new Ingeo PLA-based powder,  PLA3110P, at this year’s huge Rapid + TCT 3D printing event.

Interpack 2023

MAy 7 - 13 | Dusseldorf, Germany

NatureWorks demonstrated its partnership with CJ Biomaterials including thermoformed and flex packaging with Ingeo PLA and PHACT PHA.

Upcoming Events

3M Open | July 27 - 30 | Blaine, MN
NatureWorks is a Sustainability Sponsor of this event for a third consecutive year.

Society for Industrial Microbiology and Biotechnology Annual Meeting | July 30 - August 2, 2023 | Minneapolis, MN
NatureWorks Interim CEO, Jill Zullo, will speak at this event.

Stay up-to-date with where NatureWorks will be on our News & Events page.