Materials company Novomer Inc. has inked a joint development agreement on polymer composites with Penford Corp. of Colorado with the aim to speed the development and commercialization of starch-polypropylene carbonate polymer composites. Novomer is developing high-performance plastics and polymers using renewable feedstocks such as carbon dioxide, while Penford has expertise in specialty starches and sustainable bioproducts. Polypropylene carbonate polymer (PPC), a thermoplastic polymer composed of nearly 50% waste carbon dioxide by weight, has good mechanical and barrier properties and a chemical backbone that is compatible and likely synergistic with specialty modified starch, according to the companies. They expect that the creation of starch-PPC composites will result in low cost, environmentally sustainable packaging polymers for the multi-billion dollar global packaging materials market.
“Governments and companies, especially those in packaged goods markets around the globe, continue to place a heavy emphasis on initiatives aimed at reducing carbon levels in the atmosphere and creating alternatives to petroleum-based plastics,” Peter Shepard, executive vice president of Novomer said in a statement.