UPM Biochemicals, headquartered in Germany, and Dongsung Chemical, headquartered in South Korea, have agreed to form a strategic partnership to develop renewable products using bio-based raw materials, initially for footwear materials. Dongsung Chemical has signed a Letter of Intent for this strategic partnership to develop a renewable polyurethane product based on UPM Biochemicals’ biobased mono-ethylene glycols (MEG), UPM BioPura™.
UPM is investing EUR 750 million to build the world’s first industrial-scale biorefinery at Leuna in Saxony-Anhalt, Germany, to convert sustainably sourced, certified woody biomass into next-generation biochemicals. The facility aims to produce 220,000 tonnes annually in total. Bio-MEG is one of the outputs. UPM targets the start-up for end 2023.
According to UPM, through this partnership the two companies will actively cooperate in the development of eco-friendly products using Bio-MEG, targeting the Asian market and its vast textile and footwear industries. Dongsung Chemical plans to diversify its portfolio by advancing eco-friendly product lines, integrating UPM’s Bio-MEG into its production. The intention is to apply it first to footwear materials and then expanding the field of application to automotive interior materials and adhesives.
UPM’s Bio-MEG is produced from sustainably sourced, certified hardwood obtained from forests in the regions around Leuna in Germany. The biomass does not compete with food resources and has a carbon reduction effect of min. 70% compared to fossil fuel-based MEG.
UPM is actively working on further optimizing processes to enable carbon neutrality or even negativity of the product.
UPM delivers renewable and responsible solutions and innovate for a future beyond fossils across six business areas: UPM Biorefining, UPM Energy, UPM Raflatac, UPM Specialty Papers, UPM Communication Papers and UPM Plywood.
To learn more, visit: www.upm.com.