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Somerset company’s new biopolymer 60% stronger than existing plastics

Posted: 27/6/11

A Somerset company is revolutionising the plastics industry with a new product that can replace traditional uses of polyethylene – and now they’re looking to expand across Europe.

Aquapak has spent 20 years in R&D to produce a recyclable, biodegradable, compostable polymer film (Enviroplax™) that is able to replace polyethylene, polypropylene and other mainstream commodity polymers.

The result is a material whose technical attributes far surpass traditional environmentally ‘unfriendly’ plastics.

Enviroplax is 60% stronger than polyethylene and 2.5 times greater in tensile strength, meaning more end product can be transported with a much lower carbon footprint.

Enviroplax is manufactured in Bridgwater, Somerset.

CEO Paul Taylor is looking to licence the product around Europe: “Many polyethylene manufacturers are struggling financially – Saudi Arabia can produce ethylene gas, the feedstock for polyethylene, at 20% of the cost to the rest of the world.

“This pressure on prices means that manufacturing overheads are higher than ever before and in such a competitive marketplace, many companies are finding it more and more difficult to survive.

“We’re offering them a lower-cost, low carbon alternative that has better qualities and that can improve profitability.”

Aquapak has signed an agreement with a strategic partner, engineering firm Systems ADI Group Ltd, led by CEO Alan Lusty (www.adiltd.co.uk) ADI Ltd are an ideal partner for Aquapak as their engineering expertise covers all disciplines ranging from mechanical to software process control including design development and production.  Due to Alan’s proven manufacturing experience, Taylor has appointed him as Managing Director of Aquapak. ADI Ltd will be invaluable to Aquapak in subsequent licensing operations.

Aquapak’s main initial focus is on biodegradable hospital laundry bags, where cross-contamination of SARS and other infections is a problem. The laundry is placed in the bag, which then dissolves in the wash, enabling the contents to be laundered easily and hygienically.

“The uses of the product can go much, much further,” continues Taylor. “It’s hydrophilic, so ideal for fresh fruit and veg packaging, dried food and cereal wrappers which extends shelf life. Packaging electronic components is also a focus, since Enviropla has excellent surface conductivity it is ideal for the packaging of electronic components and computer hardware.

For more information, visit www.aquapakpolymers.com

Call Somerset 3D now on 0845 122 2066 to register your interest in the renewables renaissance in Somerset.