Bio-plastics are plastics that are bio-based, biodegradable or have both these properties. Bio-plastics are generally bio-based, biodegradable plastics such as polylactic acid (PLA), polybutylene succinate (PBS), polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA) or bio-based, non-biodegradable such polyethylene (PE), polyethylene terephthalate (PET) etc. They are mostly derived from renewable feed-stocks are eco-friendly which tends to shift the manufacturer for production of the bioplastics.
The global production capacity of Bio-plastics in 2016 was 4.2 million tonnes. The largest share of the production capacity globally is for Polyurethanes (PU). It occupied a share of 41.2% of the entire production. The second largest share is for Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET). It has a share of 22.8% followed by Starch Blends (10.3%), Polylactic Acid (PLA) 5.1%, Polyethylene (PE) 4.8%, and others.
On the consumption side bio-based, non-biodegradable plastics has the largest share. The consumption is more because of its properties similar to conventional plastics. In the end-segment bioplastics are being used in various industries such as packaging, textile, consumer goods, electrical & electronics, and other industries. Among all the industries bio-plastics has the highest consumption and growing application in the rigid packaging industry. The properties of bio-plastics to have gloss, antistatic behavior and good printability are driving the market.
According to geographic segmentation, Europe is the largest consumer of bio-plastics and will dominate the market in near future. While Central and South America is forecasted to grow at the highest CAGR.
The major reasons for driving the market of bio-plastics are government policies for cleaner environment, tax subsidies, and taxes on conventional plastics. Also, manufacturers are looking for alternative source of stable raw material to produce plastics as there is a lot of fluctuation in oil prices. The growth of the bio-plastics market is hindered because of its high cost in production compared to conventional plastics. Companies are spending in research & development to find innovative ways and process to produce bio-plastics.