Bio-based polypropylene (PP) market is expected to grow on account of its sustainable nature as a feasible drop-in replacement to the synthetic counterparts, as per Grand View Research, Inc. Bio-based PP is similar to synthetic PP in nature, but is made from organic/bio-based raw materials including corn, sugarcane and beet. Increasing application scope is expected to enhance bio-based PP use in textiles, automobiles, packaging, medical and pipe systems. Over 50% of plastic used in automobiles are polypropylene which helps in reducing weight for achieving lower carbon footprint. Companies such as Renault and Peugeot have expressed desire to use bio-based PP in the near future in case of low cost and increased functionalities including better comfort, long life and reduced weight. South America and Asia are major regional markets, which are expected to witness high investments for bio-based PP production primarily due to abundant raw material availability.
Global Bioenergies developed bio-based propylene from glucose through artificial metabolic pathway same as bio-isobutene production due to incapability of microorganisms to synthesize propylene. The company has stated probable strategic partnerships with investors for developing bioprocesses based on their patented technology. It is expected that sugar fermented PP will be economical as compared to petrochemical based PP. Dow Chemical is focusing on the development of propylene derivatives such as acrylic acid and acrylates chain and has collaborated with OPX Biotechnologies for production of bio-acrylic acid. Coskata along with Total Petrochemicals and IFP Energies is developing microorganisms and syngas fermentation platform for propanol production from biomass, which is a key ingredient in bio-based PP manufacturing.