Bioplastics to Overtake Conventional Plastics by Early 2020s

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In Italy, the Italian Institute of Technology is studying the viability of bioplastics and predicts that biomaterial based plastics will outperform and overtake traditional plastics by the early 2020s. Researchers are optimistic even though bioplastics currently cost on average about 50% more than conventional plastics because they say economies of scale will improve once the logistics chains are set up for bioplastics and because of increased regulations on non-degradable plastics while oil extraction costs increase.

Researchers foresee bioplastic applications emerging stronger in non-food packaging applications since any plastics dealing with food require more stringent testing for food safety verification. Also, since many bioplastics can degrade at high temperatures they don’t see much of a future for them in any related high temperature applications such as baking paper or hot beverage cups.