Capacity pegged at 9.2 million tons by 2016 due to blistering usage appetite.
This is from 2011 capacity of 3.8 million tons. Value of 2016 capacity estimated at $19.7 billion, a 140% rise in just half a decade, according to Lux Research.
“Several strong forces – consumer preference, corporate commitment, and government mandates and support – are driving development in this space.” said Kalib Kersh, Lux Research Analyst and lead author of the report titled "Global Bio-based Chemical Capacity Springs to Scale."
“For an industry with the scale of plastics, polymers, and chemicals, no business issue is as big as that of capacity. For bio-based alternatives to compete with petroleum, they have to match billion-dollar businesses producing at megaton levels,” says Kalib.
Lux Research also forecasted growth for current well-performing bio-based materials.
"Bioplastics steal the scene but will slow down. From 2006 to 2011, bioplastics have experienced explosive growth of 1,500% to a current aggregate capacity of 470,000 tons, and a 10.9% share of all bio-based materials. Expansion is expected to moderate, though their capacity will still grow 57% from 2011 to 2016," said Lux Research.
"Cellulose polymers and starch-based plastics dominant. Cellulose polymers and starch-derived materials still rule because they are durable, strong and easily biodegradable: They’ve been widely used in high-performance plastic coatings, buttons and yarns, and even early LEGO bricks. However, their share of total capacity will slide from 45% in 2011 to 21% in 2016," it said further.
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