What is CPLA?
Biodegradable CPLA is a mixture of lactide and aliphatic polyesters. It can be either a hard plastic or a soft flexible one depending on the amount of aliphatic polyester present in the mixture. CPLA is made by copolymerising lactide (made by fermenting cornstarch, cheese whey, etc.) with aliphatic polyester (e.g dicarboxylic acid or glycol made from fermentation of glycerol). All are renewable resources.
Possible applications will include compost bags, cushioning materials, food wrapping materials, food packaging, fishing nets, etc. It is easy to process with stability up to 200 °C.
Disposal: If incinerated, no toxic substances are generated. The heating value and carbon dioxide generated during combustion are lower, by almost half the level, of that generated by PE or PS.
Although CPLA has a high molecular weight and high melting-point, it begins breaking down into a low-molecular weight polymer, in natural environments, after 5-6 months. Complete decomposition after 12 months. When composted with food garbage, it begins breaking down into a low-molecular weight after 2 weeks.