Renmatix, Virent Collaborate on Bio-Based Packaging

New advances in sustainable chemistry will help the partnership deliver broader supplies of affordable bioplastics packaging.


Renmatix and Virent announced a strategic collaboration at last week's ICIS Innovation Awards in London, with both companies looking to combine their technologies  to convert affordable cellulosic sugars to renewable chemicals and bio-based packaging materials.

Under the terms of the multi-phase development project, Renmatix’s Plantrose platform will be evaluated and potentially optimized to provide an affordable sugar stream for Virent’s Bioforming process for the large-scale production of bio-based paraxylene. Paraxylene is a basic raw material used in the manufacture of purified terephthalic acid (PTA), an important chemical in the production of plastic bottles and fibers made from polyethylene terephthalate (PET). Integrating local feedstock processing with on-site commercial production will lower costs and increase the viability of using renewable chemicals in bio-based packaging and plastics for industrial and consumer goods.

Selected by ICIS as the Best Innovation by a small to mid-sized enterprise, Renmatix’s Plantrose process produces affordable cellulosic sugars as the bridge between upstream biomass and downstream plant-based chemicals. An alternative to current petro-based materials, Renmatix’s C5 (xylose) and C6 (glucose) Plantro sugars are produced by an advanced water-based method known as supercritical hydrolysis. 

“Products derived from renewable resources are in great demand and that demand is driving significant change across conventional value chains. This recognition from ICIS reinforces that sustainable technologies, which were once the seed of a meaningful shift have grown to become an industry mandate,” said Mike Hamilton, CEO of Renmatix. “Working with the right partners, like Virent, on the common goal of providing scalable solutions with affordable economics, we are pioneering the bio-based value chains that can meet those needs.”

Virent’s bio-based paraxylene product, trademarked BioFormPX, won this year’s ICIS award for Best Innovation for Sustainability.  Virent’s BioFormPX is chemically identical to paraxylene made from petroleum and allows manufacturers to offer customers 100% bio-based PET packaging, fibers and films. Virent and The Coca-Cola Company entered into a strategic partnership in 2011 to accelerate the commercialization of 100% renewable, recyclable PlantBottle packaging.

“The market growth for sustainable products will be met by innovative technologies working in partnership with the world’s leading brands” said Lee Edwards, CEO of Virent.  “Together we aim to accelerate delivery of commercial volumes of renewable chemicals by integrating our world class technologies to achieve lower costs and higher efficiency from sustainable biomass based feedstocks.  We are delighted and proud to be recognized by ICIS, along with Renmatix, in this years’ awards.” To read more, click HERE.

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