CENTENNIAL, COLO. — Penford Corp. and Novomer, Inc. have entered a joint development agreement for the development and commercialization of sustainable packaging materials.

“Novomer’s expertise in sustainable polymers combined with Penford’s expertise in specialty starch-based formulations provide an opportunity to create highly functional, cost-effective, and renewable thermoplastics to extend or replace petroleum-based plastics in barrier films and structured articles,” said Wallace Kunerth, chief science officer for Penford.

The alliance is designed to accelerate the development and commercialization of starch-polypropylene carbonate polymer composites. It is believed such composites will create low cost, environmentally sustainable packaging polymers.

“Governments and companies, especially those in packaged goods markets around the globe, continue to place a heavy emphasis on initiatives aimed at reducing carbon levels in the atmosphere and creating alternatives to petroleum-based plastics,” said Peter Shepard, executive vice-president of Novomer. “We believe that the combination of Novomer’s extensive PPC technology with Penford’s lower-cost renewable specialty starch products will create truly novel and cost-effective packaging materials and a new avenue to address these market needs.”

Novomer is a new materials company working on high-performance plastics and polymers using renewable feedstocks such as carbon dioxide.