Engineering Materials

K Fair 2019: A step further along the road towards a circular economy

In the news we often hear and read about the effects of climate change, resource depletion and about plastic waste being a hazard to the world we live in. Consumers are becoming more knowledgeable about sustainability topics and are increasingly demanding not only products that have a positive impact on the environment and on society, but also more transparency over the total impact of ownership, throughout the entire value chain.  

The plastics industry must answer to these challenges and adapt to the needs of a wider range of stakeholders. The time is ripe for all players, from raw material suppliers to plastics processers and brand owners, to work together toward a more sustainable and circular world.

With this movement, it is only fitting that one of the key themes of the K Fair this year is plastics for sustainable development, focusing on circular economy, water management, and renewable energy. As a K Fair exhibitor, we – DSM - are showcasing present and future sustainable material solutions that address the challenges our world faces today. We are especially excited to be announcing our new sustainability strategy, the next step of our long-term journey toward circularity.

The road already travelled 

At DSM we are strongly committed toward Climate & Energy, Resources & Circularity. In our journey so far, we have made strides to help manufacturers in a variety of different industries offer end-user products that have a positive impact on the environment, society and meet government regulations.

Our engineering thermoplastics contribute toward cleaner & safer cars, safer ingredients in electrical & electronics and food waste reduction. Our commercialized bio-based and recycled based materials, EcoPaXX , Arnitel Eco and Akulon RePurposed, and our increasing proportion of renewable electricity to power our operations, are further examples of DSM’s long-term commitment.

Take Akulon RePurposed, our recycled based polyamide 6: DSM works with local suppliers in India to recover discarded fishing nets from the Ocean and transform them in special grades used in technical parts like water sports equipment. This development supports litter-free beaches, a healthier marine environment and creates a positive social impact for local communities in India.


Our Arnitel Eco material is a bio-based thermoplastic copolyester (TPE) that delivers high performance with the added benefit of a lower environmental impact. The material is 50% made from renewable resources, based on rapeseed oil instead of mineral oil.

As our most established bio-based polymer, launched already in 2009, EcoPaXX polyamide 410 derived from castor bean oil has been successful in many applications where high performance is as important as low carbon footprint, such as in lead-free solutions for safe drinking water.

The road ahead – exciting announcement at K 2019!

You may be wondering what is on the road ahead for DSM Engineering Materials. During the K Fair, on October 17th at 11:30 am, we will be making an exciting announcement about our upcoming sustainability strategy at our booth B11 in Hall 6! 

Also, make sure to visit our booth to learn more about all the sustainable material solutions that can be utilized in your applications, and make sure to sign up for one of our tech seminars to learn about the latest trends in the automotive and electronics industries. To reserve your seat to attend these tech seminars click here.

Irene Colicchio

Global Sustainability Engineer

Published on

09 October 2019


  • Blog
  • Sustainability

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Irene Colicchio

Global Sustainability Engineer

Irene Colicchio is Global Sustainability Engineer with the Engineering Materials division of DSM. Her interest in sustainable plastic materials and solutions dates to her early studies. In her master thesis obtained from the University of Bologna in Italy, she investigated the recycling of plastic bottles. During her PhD time at the University of Aachen in Germany, Irene studied polymeric membranes for use in hydrogen fuel cells. After joining DSM in 2008, Irene started as a research scientist leading the team working on EcoPaXX, the polyamide PA410 with bio-based content. In her current role, Irene engages with colleagues, suppliers, and customers to drive business growth via sustainability and contribute to the creation of sustainable value chains. Her drive is to stimulate life cycle thinking in and outside DSM and to support the development of value propositions underpinned by proven sustainability elements - environmental and social. She is focal point for customers’ programs on Scope 3 emissions.

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