CAMBRIDGE, Mass.--(Metabolix, Inc. (NASDAQ: MBLX) and Archer Daniels Midland Company, today announced that AL-PACK Enterprises Ltd., an innovative film producer located in New Brunswick, Canada, will launch a new home and garden mulch film based on Mirel™ bioplastic. The specific terms of the supply agreement have not been disclosed.)--Telles, a joint venture between
“Through AL-PACK, the home gardener will now benefit from Mirel-based mulch films that are biodegradable in soil within a growing season”
The AL-PACK film product will be an industry-first, using Mirel A5004 film for agricultural and horticultural purposes where controlled biodegradability in soil is the primary benefit. AL-PACK intends to have its agricultural mulch film product for the home gardener market available for fall retail tradeshows, with plans to offer an industrial mulch film product in the near future.
“This is a new market sector that we are entering,” explained Vernon Allen, owner of AL-PACK Enterprises. “The Mirel resin was the ideal choice due to its high biobased content and its ability to biodegrade in the soil within one growing season. We were able to utilize field performance data that Telles provided to bring a commercial film product to market in less than six months. We are very excited with this film offering for agricultural applications.”
Agricultural films are highly beneficial for improving farming productivity. Their use has been shown to extend crop growing seasons, impede weed growth and improve water efficiency. Mirel-based agricultural films can be tilled into the soil at the end of a growing season, rather than removed and sent to landfills as with petroleum-based films. This saves labor and disposal costs and reduces landfill waste. Telles has made substantial progress in controlling the rate of biodegradation for agricultural mulch films, tailoring the film material to meet variable growing climates, soil conditions and crop diversity.
The agricultural and horticultural market's demand for plastic films continues to rise. According to Andrew Reynolds of Applied Market Information (AMI Consulting), the market size of plastic films for agricultural uses was 3.6 million tons in 2008.
“Through AL-PACK, the home gardener will now benefit from Mirel-based mulch films that are biodegradable in soil within a growing season,” explained Bob Engle, general manager of Telles. “Mirel is highly effective and safe for home garden use as it biodegrades into water, carbon dioxide and biomass. Through the Mirel line of bioplastic resins, Telles continues to offer agricultural and horticultural product manufacturers with an alternative to petroleum-based plastics, enabling them to differentiate their offerings and provide consumers with more sustainable options.”
AL-PACK Enterprises Ltd. is a privately owned packaging company that was incorporated by Louis LeBlanc and Vernon Allen in 1995. The company manufactures and services their customers throughout North America from its head office in Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada.
For more information please visit www.al-pack.com.
About Mirel Bioplastics
Mirel is a family of bioplastic materials that have physical properties comparable to petroleum-based resins, yet are biobased and biodegradable in natural soil and water environments, in home composting systems, and in industrial composting facilities where such facilities are available. The rate and extent of Mirel’s biodegradability will depend on the size and shape of the articles made from it. However, like nearly all bioplastics and organic matter, Mirel is not designed to biodegrade in conventional landfills.
Commercial grades of Mirel are available for injection molding, thermoforming, sheet extrusion and film applications. For more information, please visit www.mirelplastics.com.
Founded in 1992, Metabolix, Inc. is an innovation-driven bioscience company focused on providing sustainable solutions for the world’s needs for plastics, chemicals and energy. The Company is taking a systems approach, from gene to end product, integrating sophisticated biotechnology with advanced industrial practice. Metabolix is now developing and commercializing Mirel™, a family of high performance bioplastics which are biobased and biodegradable alternatives to many petroleum-based plastics, through Telles, a joint venture between Metabolix and Archer Daniels Midland Company. Metabolix is also developing a proprietary platform technology for co-producing plastics, chemicals and energy, from crops such as switchgrass, oilseeds and sugarcane.
For more information, please visit www.metabolix.com. (MBLX-G)
Safe Harbor for Forward-Looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements which are made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. The forward-looking statements in this release do not constitute guarantees of future performance. Investors are cautioned that statements in this press release which are not strictly historical statements, including, without limitation, statements regarding expectations for Mirel market demand, constitute forward-looking statements. Such forward-looking statements are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated and are detailed in Metabolix's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Metabolix assumes no obligation to update any forward-looking information contained in this press release or with respect to the announcements described herein.