China revises national standard for polylactic acid 06-27-2024

Summary: On 25 April, the revised National Standard of Polylactic Acid (GB/T29284–2024) was released, taking effect as of 1 Nov., 2024, to replace the 2012 version (GB/T29284-2012).

Over the recent years of gradual implementation of the "plastic ban" policy, China has been pushing industrialisation in the biodegradable materials industry. Higher levels of regulation and standardisation on the technical requirements of related products is one of the key moves, and polylactic acid (PLA) is one of the key focuses in the industry development.

On 25 April, the National Standard of Polylactic Acid (GB/T29284–2024) was issued, which is the first revision since the release of the 2012 version (GB/T29284-2012) by the State Administration for Market Regulation (SAMR) and Standardization Administration of the People's Republic of China (SAC). The new national standard comes into effect as of 1 Nov., 2024, replacing the GB/T29284-2012.


The 2024 version was drafted by Zhejiang Hisun Biomaterials Co., Ltd., Anhui BBCA Biochemical Co., Ltd., Pliith Biotechnology Co., Ltd., Zhuhai Kingfa Biomaterial Co., Ltd., Henan Jindan Lactic Acid Technology Co., Ltd., Yangzhou Huitong Technology Co., Ltd., Henan Longdu Torise Biomaterials Co., Ltd., Shenzhen Esun Industrial Co., Ltd., Ma'anshan Tong-Jie-Liang Biomaterials Co., Ltd., Beijing Technology and Business University, Chinese Academy of Sciences, etc. It provides definitions of PLA resin, stipulates categorisation, requirements, inspection rules, labelling, packaging, transport and storage, and lists out the applicable test methods.


The standard applies to PLA resins processed from lactic acid or lactide through polymerisation, grades PLA resins into: special grade, extrusion grade, injection moulding grade and fibre grade, along with the performance requirements.

Table Performance requirements on PLA resins
No Inspection item Requirement
Special gradea Extrusion grade Injection moulding grade Fibre grade
1 Sensory requirement Generally transparent or semi-transparent particles, no strange smell, no foreign matter
2 Water, % ≤0.05
3 Density, g/cm3 1.25±0.05
4 Melt mass flow rate (MFR) deviation, (190℃, 2.16kg)/(g/10 min)b MFR<5 ±1.0 ±1.0 - ±1.0
5≤MFR<10 ±2.0 ±2.0 - ±2.0
10≤MFR<20 ±5.0 ±2.0 ±2.0 ±2.0
MFR≥20 ±10.0 - ±10.0 ±10.0
5 Melting point, ℃ - ≥160 for biaxially oriented film ≥125 ≥145 for staple fibres
≥145 for sheets
≥140 for extrusion and film blowing ≥160 for long staple
≥140 for blow moulding ≥125 for core-structure skin
6 glass transition temperature, ℃ - ≥55
7 Tensile breaking stress, MPa - ≥45.0
8 Charpy notched impact strength, kJ/m2 - ≥1.0
9 Relative biodegradation rate, % ≥90
10 Ash content, % ≤0.1
11 Lactide content, % - ≤0.50
12 Molecular Weight Distribution Index (MWDI) - ≤2.00 ≤2.20 ≤1.80
13 Chromaticity colourc - - - -

Note: a: Performance indicators and the related test methods for special grade that are not given in the table may be determined by the agreement between the parties. b: Temperature at MFR test can be altered to 210℃ if consensus is reached.c: Indicator of Colour can be determined by the parties.

Source: National Standard of Polylactic Acid (GB/T29284–2024)


More information can be found at CCM Bio-based Materials China Quarterly Report.

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