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Novel technology to boost the European Bioeconomy: reducing the production costs of PHA biopolymer and expanding its applications as 100% compostable food packaging bioplastic (EUROPHA)
Date du début: 1 oct. 2013, Date de fin: 30 sept. 2016 PROJET  TERMINÉ 

Bioplastics like PHA are long-term sustainable alternatives because they can show equal performance to conventional petrochemical plastics, originate from renewable non-food resources and are 100% bio-degradable. Although PHA shows better performance than alternative bioplastics (PLA and starch), the market uptake of PHA biosplastics shows the following obstacles: 1) PHA is expensive (>4.5 €/kg), much higher than starch plastics and other bio-based polyesters. This is caused by three facts in the production process: High raw material costs; expensive PHA extraction to ensure high quality; small production volumes. The second obstacle is the 2) Small market share of European PHA (dominated by China and US) that limits the potential of a European Bioeconomy. EuroPHA will solve the need to establish a competitive PHA production capacity in Europe by: a) Reduction of PHA production costs: using low-value feedstock (agro-food waste/surplus streams) as starting material in three-phase biological synthesis of PHA by mixed microbial culture; b) Environmentally friendly & cost-effective PHA extraction step; c) Novel formulations of PHA for 100% complete and short-time biodegradability packaging bioplastics by current industrial technology: monolayer film and extrusion foam for food packaging. EuroPHA will provide these economic benefits for Europe by our project members: 40% reduction of final price (≈2.6€/kg), this will enable the increase of European PHA global market share from current 0.1% to 15% in five years post project (45 ktpa worth 135€ million) for food packaging applications. Price-competitiveness vs. starch-based (today 3.75 €/k) and PLA (2.5€/kg) making possible to penetrate a 20% in the starch-plastic market (22 kpta with revenues of 90€ million) and 15% in the PLA market (23 kpta worth 50€ million) in five years post project. Turnover of 50€ million from 20kpta production in five years post project for new applications.



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