Sustainability has been at the core of BASF’s operations for many years and is anchored into the organization’s governance, compensation systems and business models. By developing the right chemistry, we deliver innovative and sustainable solutions in diverse categories from dispersions and resins to plastics and building materials.
This commitment to sustainability is outlined transparently in our long-term goals in the areas of economy, environment, safety, employees and society. For example, we’re aiming to achieve net zero CO2 emissions by 2050 and achieve $25 billion in Accelerator sales by 2025.
To accomplish these goals and more, we continue to develop sustainable and high-performing solutions that meet the needs of our customers and theirs. Our additives are the result of decades of expertise and innovations coming together to culminate in an extensive portfolio of high-quality polymer emulsions, acrylic binders, dispersions and resins.
Join us as we dive into 3 of these offerings and explore how they deliver sustainability benefits without compromising on performance, as well as how they fit into our broader sustainability initiatives.
Sustainability in dispersants
Dispersants play a vital role in formulations of all types. They improve stability and performance through optimal particle separation to prevent settling or clumping and improve pigment dispersion.
Water-based formulations are growing in demand as consumers look for more sustainable solutions. They offer lower or no VOCs and give off fewer or no APEOs.
In the past, formulators would opt for solvent-based solutions for their paints and coatings with carbon blacks or organic pigments, but that doesn’t have to be the case.
DISPEX® Ultra PX 4585 is a waterborne dispersant of the acrylate block copolymer family of products made by controlled free radical polymerization (CFRP), allowing for the formulation of polymeric dispersants with defined polymer architecture and a low poly-dispersity index.
“This dispersant is great for light-duty industrial applications such as general industrial or protective maintenance coatings,” says Erin Moore, Marketing Manager at BASF. “It can be used in water-based systems in applications that require some dispersing of the pigment across the substrate.”
As a higher molecular weight dispersing agent, it delivers industry benchmark performance when it comes to carbon black and organic pigment dispersions, with low odour and zero APEOs and VOCs according to EU 2004-42 methods.
EFKA® PX 4701 is a dispersant that facilitates sustainability through versatility. As a general-purpose 100% solids active dispersant with universal pigment applications, it’s ideal for use in a variety of automotive, inkjet and industrial coating formulations.
“Sustainability isn’t just minimizing impact on the environment, it’s also the ability to leverage technology to be able to use fewer materials in different types of systems and settings,” says Moore. “EFKA PX 4701 is one of those key products that allow a formulator to use fewer types of products in their formulation but still maintain a high level of impact.”
EFKA PX 4701 doesn’t sacrifice performance for versatility. With its high molecular weight, it provides formulations with strong viscosity reduction, excellent stability, improved color strength of organic pigments, and is even efficient in dispersing carbon black. It is suitable for UV- curable, solvent- and water-based ink formulations.
In addition to implementing high-performing versatile additives compatible with water-based formulations, using products containing a high percentage of biorenewable materials can also contribute to sustainability initiatives.
FOAMASTER® NO 2331 is a defoamer for manufacturing and application of emulsion paints, adhesives, functional coatings and printing inks. It is based on biorenewable native oils as opposed to mineral oils, which are derived from crude oil.
“Mineral oil is not as sustainable as native oils, which include sunflower seed oil, castor oil, soybean oil — naturally occurring oils in our environment,” says Moore. “Mineral oil contains a few more compounds and won’t break down as easily. Native oil-based defoamers are more sustainable as it relates to our environment and the overall lifecycle of the product.”
FOAMASTER NO 2331 also has FDA food contact compliancy, and is suitable for use in overprint varnishes, ink applications, and adhesives within the printing and packaging industry and for polymerization in industrial applications.
Most importantly, it can offer equal or better performance compared with mineral oil-based defoamers, providing fantastic defoaming and long-term persistency, as well as excellent to better appearance compared to competitive products in adhesive films based on acrylic co-polymer dispersion for pressure-sensitive adhesives.
There’s a high interest in the market for biorenewable chemicals, an area expected to gain remarkable traction from 2021-2027 as developments improving effectiveness and sustainability continue and consumer demand grows.
Sustainability starts with us
For BASF, sustainability isn’t as simple as just supplying customers with the right chemistry and products – it’s built-in throughout the organization.
“It's not just about sustainable solutions in the end product, it's also about how we narrate the conversation of sustainability,” says Moore. “How are we a thought leader around the concepts of sustainability, and how are we engaging different stakeholders around the concept?”
In 1994, BASF introduced its “Vision 2010” sustainability strategy, and was one of the first companies worldwide to publicly commit to sustainable development at the time.
Today, sustainability remains a core concept for BASF. Balancing economic, environmental, and social interests is at the forefront of our goals.
“We want to drive sustainable solutions for our customers not just for now, but also in the future,” says Moore. “In order to do that, we have to treat them with respect and listen to their needs, and we also have to work to drive ethical decisions that not only positively benefit society, but also our environment.”
Learn more about sustainability at BASF
View DISPEX Ultra PX 4585
View EFKA PX 4701
View FOAMASTER NO 2331