Our Innovation Analysts recently looked into emerging technologies and up-and-coming startups in the packaging industry. As there is a large number of startups working on a wide variety of solutions, we decided to share our insights with you. This time, we are taking a look at 4 promising bioplastic material solutions.
Heat Map: 4 Top Bioplastic Materials
For our 4 picks of bioplastic material startups, we used a data-driven startup scouting approach to identify the most relevant solutions globally. The Global Startup Heat Map below highlights 4 interesting examples out of 268 relevant solutions. Depending on your specific needs, your top picks might look entirely different.
GFBiochemicals – Polymers From Biomass
Biobased polymers replace conventional oil and gas-based plastic materials with other components, based on hydrocarbons derived from renewable resources. Biomass comes from grass, wood, cellulose, straw and can be extracted directly from plants or produced by microorganisms in fermentation processes. The Italian startup GFBiochemicals develops technology for the recovery and purification of biobased levulinic acid from biomass. This enables replacing petroleum-based components like phthalate-based plasticizers in plastics for packaging, personal & home care, pharmacology, and other markets.
Eranova – Starch-Based Bioplastics
Most of the starch for the production of bioplastic derives from crops such as potatoes or corn. An alternative bio-source for plastic production is starch coming from the bloom of green Algaes, which otherwise just pollutes the environment. French startup Eranova manufactures biodegradable polymers using technology that extracts starch from algae. Combined with other materials, it produces compounded resins or polymers that are compostable and biodegradable.
Willow Ridge Plastics – Oxo-Biodegradable Plastics
Special additives are engineered to help plastic products oxo-biodegrade at the end of their designated planned life-cycle and can be added to most resins/plastics. Using the oxo-biodegradation process, time, ambient heat, and/or ultraviolet light will oxidize the plastic. Oxidation reduces the molecular weight of the plastic and allows for oxygen-containing functional groups to form within the polymer. This allows microorganisms to further biodegrade the polymer once it has been disposed of. The US-based company Willow Ridge Plastics manufactures oxo-biodegradable additives. They can degrade almost all plastic products that are disposed of in landfills. The additives make plastic “rust” by using the oxo-biodegradation process to completely oxidize the plastic.
CelluComp – Bio-Nanocomposites
Bio-nanocomposites are biopolymers which have been stabilized using nanoparticles that enhance technical properties such as barrier, thermal, chemical, or mechanical stability. The Scottish company CelluComp offers Curran — a material developed from the extraction of nano-cellulose fibers of root vegetables, such as carrots and sugar beets. Curran offers additional mechanical properties e.g. stiffness, strength, and lightweight, which is suited for personal care packaging, food packaging, cosmetics, etc.
What About The Other 264 Bioplastic Material Solutions?
While we believe data is key to creating insights it can be easy to be overwhelmed by it. Our ambition is to create a comprehensive overview and provide actionable innovation intelligence for your Proof of Concept (PoC), partnership, or investment targets. The 4 bioplastic material startups showcased above are promising examples out of 268 we analyzed for this article. To identify the most relevant solutions based on your specific criteria and collaboration strategy, get in touch.