Novara, Italy -- The European Union's ReBioFoam (Renewable Bio-polymer Foams) research project aims to develop a new type of packaging using non-food agricultural raw materials which can be disposed of easily after use, thanks to their complete hydrosolubility.
And the evenutal aim is to replace the most popular moulded cushion foams for transport packaging, such as polystyrene (EPS), polyurethane, polyethylene (EPE) and polypropylene (EPP), the project organisers say.
The project, financed under the EU's Seventh Framework Programme, involves ten partners from eight European Countries, in association with ERRMA (the European Renewable Raw Materials Association), a body devoted to Europe-wide promotion of the use of renewable raw materials in the energy and materials sectors.
The project aims to develop protective packaging, a sector in which materials such as EPS, polyurethane and EPE and EPP -- all polymers of synthetic origin -- are generally used, said a press statement from coordinator Italian bioplastics group Novamont. The company adds that this bioplastic may well offer "a significant opportunity for more sustainable types of packaging."
According to Novara, Italy-based Novamont, the project will try to develop a flexible and eco-sustainable process, with a low energy impact, to make expanded biodegradable packaging, containing renewable raw materials. Foaming of the biopolymers will be done using microwave technology, said Novamont. This uses specially designed moulding presses with innovative coatings, which will exploit the water naturally present in the Novamont biopolymers as expansion agents.
For further information visit www.rebiofoam.eu