Metabolix develops PHA coatings to line kraft paper bags, making them suitable for collection of biodegradable waste; the eco-friendly coatings said to improve strength, flexibility, puncture-resistance

LOS ANGELES , June 19, 2014 () – Biomaterials producer Metabolix Inc. has developed polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA) coatings for kraft paper in an effort to provide an alternative to plastic bags when it comes to collecting food waste, Food Production Daily reported on June 18.

The company has created two compostable film-grade resins. One, Mvera B5010, is suitable for the compostable bag and film market. Mvera B5011 is a transparent option for the same application.

The material can serve as a replacement for polyethylene-based plastic bags, as consumer and retailer demand for a greener plastic grocery bag is steadily on the rise.

Its largest single application is in collecting biodegradable materials like yard waste, eliminating scraps from streams and landfills, and food waste. The film can be processed in anaerobic digester facilities that reprocess biodegradable waste.

Bob Engle, Metabolix's vice president of biopolymers, says the product can be marketed on its functional virtues, environmental friendliness notwithstanding. Engle details some of the functional benefits of the biopolymer, which can serve as a modifier for other plastics including polyvinyl chloride (PVC) or polylactic acid (PLA). As an additive, PHA can replace non-biobased additives without the need to modify equipment.

In addition, the material can extend the life of plastics by reducing the migration of plasticizers out of products. It improves puncture- and tear-resistance, printability, and seal strength.

The primary source of this article is Food Production Daily, Montpellier, France, on June 18, 2014. Click here to view the primary source’s version of the article.

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