But although PLA has potential uses in many areas and opens up completely new markets for farmers, research in Germany has so far been slow. At present there is too little PLA in Germany to research further innovative applications. The Americans currently lead the way, already producing PLA in large quantities. But Europe is gradually catching up. "Now is exactly the right time for companies to bring in their skills in product and application development and open up the ‘market of tomorrow',” says Dr. Hartmut Pflaum from Fraunhofer UMSICHT, which is providing scientific support for the project.

Over 60 experts from all areas of the PLA value chain followed the call to attend the Teterow PLA innovation forum. Agriculturalists, manufacturers and processors of sugar and starch, technology planners, product and application developers, scientists and politicians were soon agreed: A polylactic acid network is needed to pool activities and drive forward the use of renewable raw materials. The first steps have already been taken with the establishment of a polylactic acid development association.

The Teterow PLA innovation forum is funded by the Federal Ministry for Education and Research (BMBF). The initiative has been included in the funding programme "Interregional Alliances for the Markets of Tomorrow” and is part of "Entrepreneurial Regions”, the innovation initiative of the BMBF for the new states. Under this initiative, the BMBF is supporting regional alliances of outstanding businesses, research and education institutions and public bodies with the aim of building on the strengths of the regions and making them competitive through successful innovation.


Angelika Jopp
Stadtverwaltung Teterow
Marktplatz 1-3
17166 Teterow
Tel.: +49 (0) 39 96/12 78 23
Fax: +49 (0) 39 96/12 78 58
E-Mail: wf@teterow.de