Recycling Polylactide Products
Disposing plastic waste is a huge issue that plastic industry faces around the world.
Possible solutions to the issue include source reduction, and disposing them through
recycling, incineration and land-filling. Further, if the resins are degradable, disposing
options may include hydrolytic degradation, photo degradation, or biodegradation.
Polylactide is a biopolymer, and is readily degradable
under hydrolytic, thermal conditions or in enzymatic or
bacterial atmosphere. Biodegradable plastics are much
useful in applications such as agricultural mulch films and
liners where in situ degradation is required.
Further, biodegradable plastics are also useful in
disposable hygiene products where recyclability is not a
probable option. In the classical waste management
stream, under the right conditions, polylactides are
expected to degrade to give carbon dioxide and water
without emitting any harmful toxins.
Further, Polylactide is a thermoplastic which can be
remelted and processed in to useful articles for the
Another option for recycling polylactides is to hydrolyze
it to get its basic chemical unit, lactic acid. Then, Lactic
acid can be reintroduced to the PLA synthesis process;
or can be used in other Lactic acid utilizing applications.