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Teijin’s Biofront demonstration plant enters operation

By Gerald Ondrey |

Teijin Ltd. (Osaka and Tokyo; www.teijin.co.jp/english)  announced that it has begun producing its proprietary heat-resistant bioplastic Biofront a demonstration plant in Matsuyama, Ehime Prefecture. The plant was originally Toyota Motor Corp.’s polylactic acid demonstration plant. Following the acquisition of the plant by Teijin in June 2008, it was migrated to Matsuyama and converted into a demonstration plant for Biofront, with additional proprietary processes required for producing the heat-resistant bioplastic. Teijin has been manufacturing Biofront at a 200-ton/yr pilot plant in Iwakuni, Yamaguchi Prefecture, where it also conducts related research and development. The addition of the demonstration plant raises the production capacity to about 1,000 tons, which will enable the company to begin developing a full-scale market for Biofront. Teijin plans to increase the annual capacity of Biofront even further to 5,000 tons by fiscal 2011, and eventually to tens of thousands of tons.   While the Iwakuni pilot plant produces Biofront from lactide, a compound produced from lactic acid obtained by fermenting starch extracted from plant matter, the new demonstration plant can start from the earlier lactic acid stage,…
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