As part of its growth strategy for its biopolymers business, BASF is partnering with WPO Polymers to further advance the fast developing Spanish and Portuguese bioplastics markets. To that end, BASF has appointed WPO Polymers as the distributor of its ecovio product range in Spain and Portugal.
The main areas of use for ecovio are plastic films such as certified compostable shopping bags, organic waste bags as well as fruit and vegetable bags - all relevant applications in light of the Spanish Royal decree 293/2018 on the reduction of plastic bags - including the mandatory usage of compostable bags (<50 µm thickness) certified according to EN 13432 - with which food companies and retailers must comply.
Building on their respective strengths, BASF and its new partner will be better positioned to accelerate business in this important market.
“We have chosen WPO Polymers as partner because of its recognized technical expertise in the field of extrusion and its in-depth knowledge of recycling and plastics materials, which complements BASF’s customer-focused strategy for ecovio® in the Spanish market,” said Mia Pettersson, head of BASF’s global business unit Specialty Polymers.
“With this new partnership, we want to further improve services for our processors through greater proximity, to meet our customers’ needs more effectively and increase our delivery flexibility. The cooperation will also allow us to support the separate collection of organic waste, as high-quality compost is important for climate change mitigation.”
Since 2018 Spanish legislation has step by step tightened the consumption of bags made of conventional plastics, which in this year culminates in the obligation for retailers and bag producers to offer only light and very lightweight certified compostable bags to consumers. Thus, the Spanish market for biopolymers is expected to become one of the largest in Europe.
„Our expertise is backed by more than 40 years of experience in the plastics industry. With the inclusion of BASF’s innovative biopolymer ecovio into our portfolio, we will both expand our established business and push the adoption of organic recycling in the Iberian peninsula,” says Manuel Olaegu, CEO and Founder of WPO Polymers.
“We give tailored material advice and technical support to each customer to ensure the optimal use of the right material for the respective process and certified compostable application – these are key success factors in the Spanish and Portuguese bioplastics markets.”
BASF’s ecovio® is certified compostable in accordance with e.g. DIN EN 13432. It is a blend of BASF’s PBAT ecoflex® and renewable raw materials, which means that ecovio® is also partly bio-based. Typical applications for ecovio® are organic waste bags, cling film, fruit and vegetable bags, as well as agricultural mulch films and food packaging applications. Studies show the advantages of ecovio® for production, packaging and shelf life of food as well as for the collection of food waste. These advantages are based on the material’s certified biodegradability in industrial and home composting as well as in soil: food waste is reduced, nutrients are returned to the soil by means of greater volumes of compost – and the accumulation of microplastic in agricultural soil is avoided.
www.ecovio.basf.com and www.biopolymers.basf.com