Kaneka has been granted the certificate of biodegradability in marine environment for biodegradable plastics
November 15, 2017
Kaneka Corporation (Osaka, Japan; President: Mamoru Kadokura) was granted the “OK Biodegradable MARINE”*1 certificate in September this year, certifying that a newly developed polyester-based biodegradable plastic (Product name: Kaneka Biodegradable Polymer PHBH, hereinafter “PHBH”) is biologically decomposed in seawater. This certificate is granted by VINÇOTTE*2 which is one of the most recognized certifying bodies in Europe where application of bioplastics*3 is well promoted.
PHBH is a bioplastic developed by Kaneka and derived from 100% plants. It is superior in biodegradability and now marketed for plastic bag application in Europe. Recently, people are more and more concerned about influence on marine ecosystems especially by microplastics*4 in addition to terrestrial ecosystems by plastics. PHBH’s biodegradability in seawater being approved this time, Kaneka will make every effort to expand its application from fishing tackles/rigs, floats, and marine materials*5 such as for restoring seaweed beds.
Kaneka Group will provide solutions for global environmental problems through development of new products like this biomass-derived biodegradable PHBH.
*1 The degree of biodegradability must reach 90% or more under seawater (30℃ ) within 6 months.
*2 An international certifying body headquartered in Belgium. It has 12 offices worldwide and started granting the “OK Biodegradable MARINE” certificate in March 2015.
*3 A general term of biomass plastics (macromolecule materials which are chemically or biologically composed from materials containing recyclable organic-based substances) and biodegradable plastics (macromolecule materials which are decomposed to the molecular level by microorganisms and finally circulated in nature in a form of carbon dioxide and water).
*4 This theme has been actively studied since a paper titled “Lost at Sea: Where Is All the Plastic?” was published on Science in 2004. (Science 2004 MAY 7 vol.304, Richard C. Thomson, University of Plymouth)
*5 Materials to fix seaweed to rocks to restore seaweed beds for environmental preservation.