BioAmber, headquartered in Minneapolis, Minesota, has signed its first take-or-pay contract for succinic acid with PTT-MCC Biochem, the joint venture between Mitsubishi Chemical, Japan’s leading chemical company and PTT, Thailand’s largest oil and gas company.
PTT-MCC Biochem will produce and sell polybutylene succinate (PBS), a biodegradable plastic made from succinic acid and 1,4 butanediol (BDO). It is constructing a PBS plant in Rayong, Thailand that will have an annual production capacity of 20,000 tons and is expected to be operational in the first half of 2015. It will consume approximately 14,000 tons of succinic acid per year at full capacity.
BioAmber plans to supply PTT-MCC from its 30,000 ton capacity plant which is under construction in Sarnia, Canada. After the commissioning and start up periods for both plants in 2015, BioAmber will exclusively supply a minimum of 80% of PTT-MCC’s total bio-succinic acid needs until the end of 2017.
The take-or-pay volumes committed by PTT-MCC over the three-year term represent approximately half of the total annual quantity of bio-succinic acid it plans to purchase from BioAmber.
“This first succinic acid take-or-pay agreement is an important milestone for BioAmber,” said Babette
Pettersen, BioAmber’s chief commercial officer. “This contract guarantees significant sales volume for our Sarnia plant during its first three years of operation. PTt-MCC is a major new buyer of bio-succinic acid and locking up this substantial volume commitment will strengthen our market leadership.”
The rapid development of such bioplastics that is taking place could have an enormous impact on the future nonwovens industry, within the context of the wider fibres and plastics sectors.