Posts tagged ‘PLA’

Corn-Based Plastics

PLA = polylactic acid, is made from fermented plant (mostly corn) starch and considered a better alternative than the traditional petroleum-based plastic, polyethylene terephthalate (PET), used to make bottles. To make PLA, dextrose is extracted from corn starch, and them lactic acid is produced as a by-product in a fermentation process. Lactic acid is converted to lactide. The molecules then link together to form polymers that are polylactic acid. Therefore, PLA comes from a renewable carbon source, it reduces greenhouse gas emissions, and it does not release toxic gas when incinerated. The idea has been around for decades, but thanks to the technology that can now produce 1 pound of PLA for less than $1, more retailers are looking into PLA as their packaging option.

Don’t get too excited just yet. (more…)

July 4, 2008 at 2:39 pm Leave a comment


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