Kaneka: High-barrier biodegradable resin

PHBHx, a novel polymer developed by Kaneka Corp. in Osaka, Japan, could have a big impact on barrier packaging markets in the next few years, according to a report by Procter & Gamble in Cincinnati. Kaneka’s Nodax resins have a broad appeal in flexible, multi-layer packaging because they are biodegradable and also because they offer EVOH-like gas barrier properties. The material reportedly processes readily in blown film extrusion and molding. Meanwhile, an agreement between Kaneka and P&G signed late last year has made speedy commercialization of PHBHx more likely. Under the deal, Kaneka pledged to build a PHBHx resin plant within three years, while P&G agreed to license the biodegradable resin technology for use in packaging. P&G itself holds application and process patents on PHBHx.

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