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Danone Research has partnered with Dutch Avantium to produce bio-sourced water bottles made from polyethylene furanoate (PEF), a furanic polyester.

Danone will use Avantium’s chemical-catalytic YXY technology to convert carbohydrates produced from grains, energy crops, lignocellulosic matter, plants, waste streams, waste paper and agricultural residues, into a variety of bio-based polymers.

Avantium CEO Tom van Aken said the agreement with Danone Research would help the company to commercialise PEF bottles.

A recent study by the Copernic Institute in France showed that PEF has a 50%-60% lower carbon footprint than oil-based PET.

Avantium, which is currently concentrating on the material’s use in existing supply and recycling chains, aims to shift to bio-based PEF bottles completely in the next three to five years.

Avantium claims, the material has better thermal, barrier and light-weighting properties compared to PET, is 100% bio-based and therefore a recyclable alternative to PET.

The company said it will continue to develop PEF from renewable feedstock not competing with food and license the technology to enable large scale production and use of PEF.

Avantium has recently opened a 40t capacity PEF pilot plant in Geleen, the Netherlands.

Earlier in December, Coca-Cola announced to invest in Avantium and two other companies to develop a 100% bio-based version of its Plant Bottle.


Image: A French study by the Copernic Institute showed that PEF has a 50%-60% lower carbon footprint than oil-based PET. Photo: Danone