Oct 22 - Bioplastics Show Potential for Growth

Bioplastics have the potential to increase their share of the plastics market if certain hurdles are met, writes Mark Jewell of the Associated Press. Although they only amount for a fraction of plastics use today, consumer demand is growing and they have the potential to decrease the country's dependence on fossile fuels:

"Bioplastics' main benefit would be to reduce from 10 percent the share of U.S. petroleum consumption that goes into plastic. The types that are biodegradable also could help compensate for the country's slow progress in recycling â€" only about 6 percent of plastic made in the U.S. was recycled in 2005, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency."

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One of the most promising entrants into the bioplastic market is a new resin by Metabollix which was designed to biodegrade in the environment.

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