- Case Study -

100% bio-based plastic

The PEFerence project will establish a globally first-of-a-kind, industrial scale, cost-effective FDCA (diacid) biorefinery flagship plant. FDCA is the building block for the production of chemicals and materials such as food packaging, films and Lego bricks from plant based materials. It presents new alternatives to fossil-based plastic solutions.

Million € funding
Project duration 5 years, September 2017 - September 2022
Funding instrument Horizon 2020 Bio-based Industries Joint Technology Initiative

Biomass is the most abundant resource of fixed renewable carbon on earth. The challenge of the PEFerence project lies in establishing at industrial scale a first-of-a-kind, cost-effective flagship plant to convert sugars from biomass into FDCA and subsequent bio-based polymers and materials.

Based on renewable feedstock, products made of PEF will significantly help to replace fossil-based packaging materials and are expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. PEF bottles can be recycled and used again as raw material for bottles, as well as in a cascading approach for packaging and textiles. The project started in September 2017 and will be active for five years.

How we reached the goals

The project aims to engineer and build the flagship plant for the production of purified FDCA (50,000 tonnes/year), demonstrating, validating and commercialising 100% bio-based materials in end user applications.

Spinverse takes care of the day-to-day management of the project: ensuring compliance with project planning and appropriate quality of activities, including effective coordination, communication, reporting and decision-making inside the consortium at project and work package levels.

Key takeaways

The aim is to eventually replace a significant share of fossil-based polyesters as well as packaging materials like glass and metal with 100 % bio-based plastic (such as PEF). EU’s Horizon 2020 programme granted funding for 25 M€ for the 44,8 M€ project.

Project partners:

Read more in the official project site.

Photo credit: Iker Urteaga

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