In the Netherlands, Total and Corbion have officially launched their 50-50 polylactic acid joint venture, Total Corbion PLA.
Announced in November of last year, the jv is constructing a 75,000 tons per year PLA plant at Corbion’s Thailand facility. Corbion has transferred the site’s lactide plant and bioplastics commercial and technical teams to Total Corbion PLA. The PLA plant will produce a range of PLAs, from standard to high-heat resistance, and is expected to come online in the second half of 2018. Stéphane Dion was recently appointed CEO of the jv.
According to Total and Corbion, PLA demand is expected to grow 10–15% annually through 2025. PLA is biodegradable and industrially compostable. It is currently used in applications ranging from food packaging, disposable tableware, textiles, oil and gas, electronics, automotive, and 3-D printing.