September 22, 2010

Biobased Chemicals East: Day 1

Day one of the Biobased Chemicals East conference gave the green blog an opportunity to hear the side of end consumer companies looking to capitalize on the use of renewable-based chemicals such as wheat straw-based polypropylene in Ford Motor's cars; biobased surfactants on Henkel's cleaning products; PLA-based fibers for US carpet maker Interface; and PLA-based polystyrene foam trays from Canadian manufacturer Dyne-a-Pak.

Ford's Ellen Lee brought several interesting samples of bio-based materials that the company has been working on. One is their soybean-based polyurethane foam that are now being used in seating applications for several Ford models. Lee said the soy foam is cost neutral or sometimes even cheaper than petroleum-based foam. Around 844m bushels of soybean could be consumed just by using the soy foams on all interior foams of Ford Motor cars!

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