Japan’s Toray agrees off-take deal for bio-based PX with US Gevo

28 June 2012 15:21  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--Toray Industries has agreed to off-take bio-based paraxylene (PX) from US renewable chemicals firm Gevo, officials at the Japanese producer said on Thursday.

Toray will use the PX - which will be produced by Gevo at a planned pilot facility - to carry out pilot-scale production of bio-based polyethylene terephthalate (PET), it said.

Toray plans to offer samples of the bio-based PET to customers in 2013 for market evaluation, it said.

Media officials at Gevo were not immediately available for additional comment. Gevo said last year that it  is working with Toray on bio-based PX.

Toray added that it succeeded in lab-level PET polymerisation to produce fibre and films samples, using terephthalic acid synthesised from Gevo's bio-based PX, and renewable mono ethylene glycol (MEG). PX and monoethylene glycol (MEG) are feedstocks for PET.

Around 50m tonnes/year of PET is produced worldwide to make fibres, films and bottles, Toray said.

PET has outstripped other polymers such as polyethylene and polypropylene in global demand, but conventional PET production faces the challenge of declining oil resources and high oil prices, the company added.

Additional reporting by Doris de Guzman in New York

Check out Doris de Guzman’s Green Chemicals Blog for views on sustainability issues

By: Stefan Baumgarten
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