BASF starts operations at expanded Ecoflex plant
* Production capacity for biodegradable plastics increases by 60,000 metric tons per year
* Production of plastics based on renewable raw materials also rises
* BASF expects significant market growth for biodegradable plastics through 2020
Ludwigshafen , Germany –– BASF has started operations at its expanded plant for the production of the biodegradable plastic Ecoflex®. Expansion of the existing plant in Ludwigshafen will increase production capacity for Ecoflex from 14,000 to 74,000 metric tons per year. At the same time, BASF will ramp up compounding capacity for Ecovio®, a derivative of Ecoflex.
“We are already successful in the market with our biodegradable polyester Ecoflex and the related innovation, Ecovio. The larger production capacities will enhance our position significantly,” said Dr. Wolfgang Hapke, president of BASF’s Performance Polymers division. “The capacity expansion will also enable us to respond even more effectively to our customers’ wishes.”
Ecoflex is a plastic that has the properties of conventional polyethylene but is fully biodegradable under industrial composting conditions in accordance with DIN EN 13432. Ecovio is a derivative of Ecoflex that is also biodegradable and that contains up to 75 percent renewable raw materials. Typical applications are shopping bags, organic waste bags, mulch films for agricultural applications, and food packaging. One of the latest innovations is Ecovio FS Paper, which is used to provide a biodegradable waterproof coating on the interior surfaces of paper cups and cardboard containers.
With Ecovio and Ecoflex, BASF is already one of the world’s leading suppliers of biobased and biodegradable plastics. Both of these properties are increasingly in demand, and the market for biodegradable and biobased plastics is currently growing by more than 20 percent per year.
BASF is the world’s leading chemical company: The Chemical Company. Its portfolio ranges from chemicals, plastics and performance products to agricultural products, fine chemicals as well as oil and gas. As a reliable partner BASF creates chemistry to help its customers in virtually all industries to be more successful. With its high-value products and intelligent solutions, BASF plays an important role in finding answers to global challenges such as climate protection, energy efficiency, nutrition and mobility. BASF posted sales of more than €50 billion in 2009 and had approximately 105,000 employees as of the end of the year. BASF shares are traded on the stock exchanges in Frankfurt (BAS), London (BFA) and Zurich (AN).
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