General, Products, Company
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- Biopolymers are a class
of polymers produced by living organisms. Starch, proteins and peptides,
DNA, and RNA are all examples of biopolymers, in which the monomer units,
respectively, are sugars, amino acids, and nucleic acids.
- Polyphenols are a group
of chemical substances found in plants, characterized by the presence of
more than one phenol unit or building block per molecule. Polyphenols are
generally divided into hydrolyzable tannins and phenylpropanoids,
such as lignins, flavonoids, and condensed tannins.
- The Biodegradable
plastic technology, developed by Sergei Braun, makes it possible to
produce biodegradable plastic for the food-packaging industry from the
residue left after processing protein-rich crops such as corn, canola,
rapeseed and soy beans.
- The cost advantage
depends on the use of a chemical substitution that replaces some of the
primary amines in the protein-based material to produce a biodegradable
material similar in qualities to polypropylene
- The food oils and
starches industry produces a surplus of vegetable proteins that can be
used for the manufacturing of environmentally friendly food packaging.
Just 6 per cent of surplus vegetable protein production in the US would
needed to produce plastic packaging for the entire country.
- Biopolymers are derived from natural resources
and hence, hold traits such as biocompatibility and biodegradability,
which gives them an edge over conventional synthetic polymers for use in a
wide range of applications. Advances in the field of biotechnology and
related sciences such as genetic engineering and recombinant DNA
technology have changed the ways of synthesis of biopolymers.
- Today, the biopolymer production and
fermentation process has taken a huge leap of advancement that offers
developers tremendous flexibility to design biopolymers befitting a
specific application. The number of end-user applications of biopolymers
is constantly on the rise and it is reasonable to believe that
biopolymers, coupled with their unique traits and advances in production
technology, would serve to bridge the huge unmet needs of this aging
- The research has found that most consumers are
confused about the wide range of new materials emerging with
‘biodegradable’, ‘home compostable’, ‘compostable’ and ‘degradable’ all
being introduced in the UK as bags, pots, trays, films or bottle formats,
albeit in relatively small quantities at present.
- According to the research, consumers initially
rate biodegradable and compostable plastics very favourably as they
believe they just ‘break down’ after disposal. However when made aware of
some of the possible impacts some of the biopolymers can have on plastics
recycling, commercial composting or if sent to landfill sites, the
respondents were less clear of the overall benefits, and were left feeling
confused. Apart from some home compostable materials, there is currently
no appropriate infrastructure for the materials to be collected and
treated in the UK.
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