Novozymes will produce Carbios’ plastic-degrading enzyme technology for Carbios’ subsidiary company Carbiolice. Carbiolice will embed these enzymes into single-use plastics, such as plastic bags, to help them biodegrade and avoid contributing toxic waste to the environment.
Carbios’ enzymes degrade plastics made from polylactic acid (PLA), often used in plastic cups. Carbiolice plans to sell these enzymes to plastic manufacturers, who can incorporate them into their PLA plastics to make them biodegradable. The enzyme-plastic mixes can also be ‘programmed’ to degrade the plastic at different rates depending on the application.
No financial details of the deal were disclosed. Once the product is launched, Carbiolice is to pay royalties to Carbios.
Alongside Carbios, Carbiolice is jointly funded by the French seed company Limagrain Céréales Ingrédients, and the French Société de Projets Industriels investment fund.
Carbios is also developing enzymes designed to degrade polyethylene terephthalate (PET).