Bioplastics versus Biofuels PDF Print E-mail
Noteworthy: There are significant differences between the use of agricultural feedstocks for biofuels production and for the production of bioplastics:

- Volumes: Whereas biofuels production has reached a multi-million ton level in the EU, the bioplastics market is still in its infancy (approx. 100,000 tons in Europe). The cultivation area needed to supply the bioplastics industry is currently very small. About 2-3 tons of bioplastics can be produced from one hectare of corn or wheat (using their starch), thus the area cultivated for the production of bioplastics can be estimated at approx. 30,000 ha in EU compared with a total agricultural area in Europe of more than 162,000,000 ha according the European Commission.

- There is a range of bioplastics materials that already use cellulosic feedstocks (wood) or food waste products like potato skins (non-edible, non-food supply).

- Strong efforts are being undertaken by the bioplastics industry to develop bioplastics from agricultural residues (cellulosic) and other waste streams. Many companies have set development goals to feed their raw material supply from crops or other agricultural feedstocks, which are non-competing with food markets in the future (biorefinery concepts).

 

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