UK unveils £60 million (US $76.4 million) funding to develop sustainable packaging: The funding, to be bolstered by industry support, and delivered by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) through the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund aims at support the development of new forms of packaging and plastic made from farming, food and industrial waste, among other measures. The government has also announced a strategy to help boost the bioeconomy, which is currently worth approximately £220 billion ($280.15 billion) and supports 5.2 million jobs.

Total Corbion PLA’s new 75,000 tons per year PLA plant in Rayong, Thailand.

Total Corbion PLA announces successful start-up of pilot plant in Thailand: Total Corbion PLA announced that it has successfully started up its 1 kTpa PLA pilot plant in Rayong, Thailand. The pilot plant started up in December 2017 and over the past months has produced a broad range of Luminy® PLA resins. In addition, the pilot plant is being used to train operators and to get a head start on the required product certifications and regulatory needs. In future, Total Corbion PLA will also be able to use the pilot plant for product development. On the same site, Total Corbion PLA’s Lactide plant is being expanded to 100 kTpa and a 75 kTpa PLA polymerization plant is under construction. Upon completion, Total Corbion PLA’s production facility in Thailand will produce a broad portfolio of Luminy® PLA neat resins: from standard PLA to innovative, high heat resistant PLA, to satisfy customer requirements for a wide range of markets from packaging to consumer goods, fibers and automotive.

Nestlé creates a research institute to develop sustainable packaging: Nestlé has created the Nestlé Institute of Packaging Sciences, dedicated to the discovery and development of functional, safe and environmentally friendly packaging solutions. Research focus areas will include recyclable, biodegradable and compostable polymers, functional paper, as well as new packaging concepts and technologies to increase the recyclability of plastic packaging. The new solutions will be tested in various product categories, before they are rolled out across Nestlé’s global portfolio.