The 10th European Bioplastics Conference took place on 5/6 November 2015 in Berlin, attracting more than 350 participants from industry, policy, research, and media. In his keynote speech, Mr Reinhard Büscher, Head of Unit Chemicals, DG GROWTH at the European Commission, stressed the necessity to promote biobased products in the European Union in order to unlock Europe’s potential for a resource-efficient economy: “We need clear, harmonised standards that define the thresholds for sustainability and facilitate high-quality recycling, which is key to create a strong biobased circular economy.”

François de Bie, Chairman of European Bioplastics (EUBP), highlighted the achievements and outstanding developments of the bioplastics industry over the past decade as one of the most innovative and exciting sectors of the European bioeconomy: “Ten years ago, bioplastics was still a buzzword. Today, my son Olivier is learning about the benefits of biobased products in high-school. The understanding and awareness of our impact on the environment is clearly growing and bioplastics are at the centre of this change,” said de Bie.

Hasso von Pogrell, Managing Director of EUBP, presented the highly anticipated 2015 annual market data update on the first day of the conference: “The positive trend of the past ten years continues. According to our latest market data, the global bioplastics production capacity is predicted to grow by more than 350 percent in the mid-term, from around 1.7 million tonnes in 2014 to approximately 7.8 million tonnes in 2019,” said von Pogrell.

This development was confirmed in several presentations during the conference by big brands and retailers, such as IKEA and Marks & Spencer, outlining their commitments and initiatives to become more sustainable and the role of bioplastics in achieving these ambitious goals. “By 2020, 100 percent of our plastics will be made from renewable and recycled sources,” explained Per Stoltz, Sustainability Developer at IKEA.

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