Applications of BioPolymers
Biopolymers are available as coatings for paper rather than the more common petrochemical coatings. Bioplastics are used for disposable items, such as packaging, crockery, cutlery, pots, bowls, and straws. They are also often used for bags, trays, fruit and vegetable containers and blister foils, egg cartons, meat packaging, vegetables, and bottling for soft drinks and dairy products. These plastics are also used in non-disposable applications including mobile phone casings, carpet fibers, insulation car interiors, fuel lines, and plastic piping. New electroactive bioplastics are being developed that can be used to carry electric current. In these areas, the goal is not biodegradability, but to create items from sustainable resources. Medical implants made of PLA (polylactic acid), which dissolve in the body, can save patients a second operation. Compostable mulch films can also be produced from starch polymers and used in agriculture. These films do not have to be collected after use on farm fields.