Plastic, which is made from fossil fuel, takes hundreds of years to degrade. Three hundred tonnes it are produced annually, making it a major contributor to global climate change. So Avantium, a biochemicals company in the Netherlands, devised a project to make plastics from plant sugars rather than fossil fuels.
The project has already won the support of beer-maker Carlsberg, which hopes to sell its pilsner in a cardboard bottle lined with an inner layer of plant plastic. It is also backed by Coca-Cola and Danone, which hope to secure a sustainable future for their bottled products.
Sugars extracted from wheat, along with corn and beets, will be used to produce the plant plastic. (CTTO)
Avantium’s plant plastic is resilient enough to contain carbonated drinks. It is also able to decompose in one year using a composter, and a few years if left in normal outdoor conditions. The project, which initially aims to make 5,000 tonnes of plastic every year, expects its production to grow as demand for renewable plastic climbs.