Investment in bioplastics sector set to increase in 2010

By Katie Nichol

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Economics Investment European bioplastics

Companies in the bioplastics market are set to increase their investment in the sector this year, according to the European Bioplastics Association.

The trade body conducted a poll amongst its members – which include BASF, NatureWorks and DuPont – in order to establish how they had fared in the difficult trading conditions of 2009, and their outlook for the next two years.

Thirty eight of the association’s members responded to the poll, with 66 per cent giving the green light to further investment in bioplastics this year.

Overall, the poll revealed, 80 per cent of respondents were optimistic for the coming year, with 20 per cent anticipating ‘excellent results’.

“This is a clear indication of the strength of green innovation,” ​commented the chairman of the European Bioplastics board, Andy Sweetman.

Healthy growth figures for 2009

Despite the unfavourable economic conditions in 2009, 47 per cent of companies reported growth in turnover. Only 10 per cent recorded a loss, and 30 per cent managed to break even.

Fifty eight per cent of respondents said that 2009 met expectations, with 17 per cent reported that the year had exceeded initial predictions.

Bioplastics still a ‘niche market’

In 2009, total global bioplastics production (both compostable and non-compostable) was 433 650 tons, and the Association predicts this to rise to 1,463 400 2013.

Although outlook in this sector appears positive, with generally high rates of growth, bioplastics remain niche with a global market share of 1 per cent, the Association said.

According to its political consultant, Harald Kaeb, in order to boost the market there is a need “incentives from an effective stimulus programme” ​that would make it easier for companies to invest in innovation and expansion in production capacity.

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