Renewable chemistry company Avantium N.V. and Henkel, a leading manufacturer of, amongst others, adhesives, sealants and functional coatings, have signed a 5-year offtake agreement under which Avantium will supply Henkel with FDCA (furandicarboxylic acid) from the flagship plant that is currently under construction in Delfzijl, the Netherlands. Production at the new facility - the world’s first commercial facility for the production of FDCA from plant-based sugars - is expected to commence in 2024.
Henkel and Avantium have been partners since 2019, when Henkel joined the PEFerence consortium; a multi-company initiative coordinated by Avantium to establish a viable supply chain for FDCA and PEF (polyethylene furanoate). Other partners include, for example, Carlsberg, LVMH, Nestle Water and LEGO.
As a participant in the consortium, Henkel tested the feasibility of FDCA for use in polyurethane adhesives. The positive outcome of those tests led to Henkel’s decision to further commercialise the development. The company now plans to market the new adhesives for use in electronic applications, such as consumer devices.
The fact that, after LVMH and Carlsberg, yet another PEFerence partner has entered into an offtake agreement for FDCA is good news, according to Bineke Posthumus, Director of Business Development of Avantium Renewable Polymers.
“One of the benefits of working with such a diverse group of reputable companies within the PEFerence consortium is that it enables us to create new applications for FDCA and PEF. The decision of Henkel to use FDCA for polyurethane adhesives for use in electronics applications is a great example of the possibility to use our high-quality, plant-based chemical building block FDCA in various markets and applications,” she said.
Incorporating FDCA to create more sustainable adhesives also aligns with Henkel’s aim to support its customers with their transition to a more circular economy.
“For us, this is just the start as we see high potential for FDCA in application areas beyond electronics, such as packaging, wood construction or textile lamination”, said Adrian Brandt, Head of Bio-Renewable materials team at Henkel Adhesive Technologies.