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February 28th, 2007
Growing with the speed of its wheat, corn, tapioca, and potato starch feedstocks, biobased plastics supplier Cereplast Inc. (Hawthorne, CA) is in the middle of an expansion, growing from the 8000 sq ft it occupied at its start when it was called Nat-ur, to more than 50,000 sq ft today. When MPW visited in mid February, the company was in the process of moving its offices to a new, adjacent building, which will also offer distribution from eight loading docks. It plans to furnish and decorate the space with 100% green materials.
The company currently has 14 grades in its portfolio, with four for injection molding, four for thermoforming, two for blowmolding, two for blown film, one for extrusion coating, and one for profile extrusion. Cereplast also has six patents, with three related to starch; two for compounding polylactic acid and copolyester; and one covering the dispersion of nanomaterials in bioresins—a research project it has undertaken with the University of Valencia in Spain to add barrier properties to bioresins.
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