Our products

Biodegradable polymer resins

“Biodegradable plastics: a considerable alternative to recycling.”

It is clear, after use, plastic products should not end up in our streets, rivers, oceans, on landfills and preferably also not as energy source in power plants. It is our task to develop products that can efficiently be re-used or turned into feedstock to form new materials.

In many cases, collection and recycling of plastic products and acquiring the right quality for a new application is difficult, costly or goes with high energy consumption. In these cases, biodegradable plastics can offer a interesting alternative. Also compostable plastics used along with food or other biodegradable products give more uniform waste flows, which stimulates composting or prevents pollution of recycling machines.

Biodegradable plastics offer excellent, in many cases even durable properties, but their chemical structure allow active bacteria in compost installations to break it down into CO2, water and biomass; building blocks for a new materials.

Biodegradable polymers

Composting is nature’s way of recycling. During composting, micro-organisms (e.g. bacteria, fungi) turn organic waste (i.e. food waste, plants, manure, leaves, wood etc.) into a valuable fertilizer (biomass) that provides nutrients to crops, improved soil condition and introduction of beneficial decease preventing microbes colonies. Under presence of oxygen, composting organism use the carbon for their energy and nitrogen to build their proteins. Significant heat is produced in this process.

Compost prevents the use of chemical fertilizers where high quantities of fossil gas are used and bringing disbalance in natures carbon and nitrogen cycle.

Composting process

Composting processes

Composting processes can be very basic (simply collecting and wetting organic waste mixtures) to well controlled with measured inputs of air, water, carbon and nitrogen to tune the quality and composting process. Also, the effective use of heat, generated during the biochemical reactions, is an important aspect to speed up the degeneration process.

Due to the aerobic circumstances in composting installations, this is much more environmentally friendly than using solid organic waste directly on lands. More favorable micro-organisms are present that prevent the release of methane, a much more severe greenhouse gas than CO2.

There are different types of industrial composting, like windrow composting, in vessel composting or anaerobic digestion. Most of the industrial composting is done using windrow composting, which is an open process where piles of feedstock are mixed and turned to provide the right carbon nitrogen ratio, temperature and oxygen level. In-vessel composting is more advanced composting where the process is operated in a vessel, to provide better control and higher quality.

Anaerobic Digestion (AD) composting processes are used to produce biogas (methane). In AD installations, composting takes place with low oxygen content and in this case, anaerobic micro-organism produce bio-methane to be collected as an alternative to fossil gas.

Industrial composting

Although any plastic will degrade at some point of time, a biodegradable plastic typically breaks down much quicker, specifically under composting circumstances. Likewise other organic materials, molecular chains of these polymers are being disintegrated by micro-organisms present in composting installations and turned into biomass, water and CO2 (or/and biogas). One of the biggest advantages of biodegradable plastic is that it can be disposed of alongside with other organic waste and makes waste streams more uniform. It stimulates composting volumes, an efficient and environmentally friendly type of “waste”.

An advantage compared to mechanical recycling is that there is no need to pre-separate the plastic into different types and the output can be much more single quality products (biomass and biogas). Also composting processes require low energy levels.

What is a biodegradable plastic?

Regulation of biodegradability

The practical potential of applying biodegradable plastic products in composting installations depends on the speed of degradation. This speed is determined by the composting circumstances, type of polymer, molecular length, material dimensions and surface area.

In Europe, the compostability of bio-plastics is regulated by application of standards, i.e. EN 13432.

A few institutes, like TÜV Austria, provide certification labels according EN13432. Labels for both home composting and industrial composting can be acquired. There are also labels for  biodegradation in soil, marine and water.

For the home compost approval the tests are carried out while temperature is kept below 30°C  while for the industrial composting approval the temperature is around 60°C. The following requirements are applicable:

  • Within 12 weeks, more than 90% of the product should be turned down in parts below 2 mm (valid for industrial composting label).
  • Within 6 months, 90% of the product should be broken down into CO2, water and biomass.
  • No heavy metals may be present.
  • No harmful influence on the quality of the compost may be caused.
TUV Austria OK compost Home S0169 TUV Austria OK compost Industrial S0169

Our products

Types of biodegradable resins



Compostable LDPE alternative



Bio-based compostable PP alternative

Our tailor made solutions

A trial with a basic polymer resin may not lead to immediate success. But do not stop there! This is exactly where Pycnoplast offers added value to you. It is in our nature to make it work by turning the resin into a smart compound recipe or develop a masterbatch type of add-on.

“Challenge us with your requirements!”