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DuPont And ADM Launch Biobased FDME Pilot Facility

May 8, 2018
DuPont Industrial Biosciences and Archer Daniels Midland Company open new biobased pilot facility in Illinois.

DuPont Industrial Biosciences and Archer Daniels Midland Company open new biobased pilot facility in Illinois.

DuPont Industrial Biosciences (DuPont) and Archer Daniels Midland Company (ADM) open what they say is the world’s first biobased furan dicarboxylic methyl ester (FDME) pilot production facility in Decatur, Illinois. FDME is a molecule derived from fructose that can be used to create a variety of biobased chemicals and materials, including plastics, that are reportedly more cost-effective, efficient and sustainable than their fossil fuel-based counterparts. The plant is the centerpiece of a long-standing collaboration that will help bring consumers a greater variety of sustainably sourced biomaterials, according to the companies.

“We’re confident FDME is both the more sustainable option and the better-for-business option,” says Michael Saltzberg, Ph.D., global business director for Biomaterials at DuPont Industrial Biosciences. “This molecule, and its numerous applications, will be high-performing, cost-effective and better for the environment. ADM’s expertise in agricultural value chains and the chemistry of carbohydrates makes them the best possible business partner on this initiative. Our goal is to bring this game-changing technology to commercial scale as quickly as possible.”

One of the first FDME-based polymers under development by DuPont is polytrimethylene furandicarboxyate (PTF), a novel polyester also made from DuPont’s proprietary Bio-PDO (1,3-propanediol). PTF is a 100% renewable polymer that, in bottling applications, can be used to create plastic bottles that are lighter-weight, more sustainable and better performing, according to DuPont. Research reportedly shows that PTF has up to 10-15 times the CO2 barrier performance of traditional PET plastic, which results in a longer shelf life. With that better barrier, companies will be able to design significantly lighter-weight packages, lowering the carbon emissions and significant costs related with shipping carbonated beverages.

For more information, visit: www.biosciences.dupont.com or www.adm.com

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