A collection of global corporations has backed a project aimed at developing plant-based biodegradable bottles by 2023. Coca Cola, Carlsberg, and L’Oréal are among companies supporting the “Paper Bottle Project,” executed by Dutch renewable chemicals company Avantium, paper packaging developer BillerudKorsnäs, and bottle manufacturers ALPLA. The project will use plant sugars to develop more eco-friendly plastics than those made with fossil fuels.
More info: Avantium
Project Carlsberg – Green Fibre Bottle said:
“We’re driven by our constant pursuit of better, to create more sustainable packaging solutions that help people to live more sustainable lives. Sometimes that means completely rethinking how things are done – pushing the boundaries of existing technologies and overcoming technical challenges as they present themselves. That’s exactly what we have been doing since 2015, and we can’t wait to continue the journey with Paboco in the coming years.”
The plastic – known as ‘PEF’ – could be used to line the cardboard bottle from the inside, to make them both functional and biodegradable. This PEF reportedly has better thermal barrier properties than standard PEF.
The plant-based polymer is 100% recyclable. It will also rot within a year if using a composter and within a few years if simply left outside, but it should be recycled where possible. Standard plastics can take hundreds of years to decompose.
The Dutch company Avantium seeks to reduce the market’s reliance on fossil fuels by developing fully plant-based plastic.
“This plastic has very attractive sustainability credentials because it uses no fossil fuels and can be recycled – but would also degrade in nature much faster than normal plastics do,” said Avantium chief executive Tom van Aken.
More companies are expected to announce partnerships with the project over the coming months.
Around the world, 300 million tonnes of plastic is made from fossil fuels. And this could make a major change in the world since plastic pollution is a major issue nowadays and it keeps growing. Plastic bottles and pieces of microplastic can be found on every single beach in the world and are affecting sea life.
Back in 1950, a global population of 2.5 billion produced approximately 1.5 million tons of plastic. However, by 2016, a population of more than seven billion produced more than 320 million tons of plastic. This figure is expected keep growing and double by 2034. Therefore, any effort to reduce plastic production is vital.
Myriam Shingleton, Carlsberg’s vice president of group development, stated that the company aims to innovate all of its packaging formats: ”We are pleased with the progress we’ve made on the Green Fiber Bottle so far. While we are not completely there yet, the two prototypes are an important step towards realizing our ultimate ambition of bringing this breakthrough to market.”
Initially, the project will manufacture relatively low 5,000 tons of plant-based plastic a year
“Innovation takes time and we will continue to collaborate with leading experts in order to overcome remaining technical challenges, just as we did with our plastic-reducing Snap Pack,” she continued.