ADVANCED MATERIALS & MANUFACTURING: Alternative Rubber / TKS Dandelion (Kazakhstan)
In 2015, global production of natural rubber reached 12.3 million tons and the world’s rubber needs are expected to require up to 21 million acres of rubber plantations by 2024. However, there are many environmental issues caused by the rubber industry from loss of biodiversity and deforestation to the use and exposure to heavy chemicals during harvesting and production. Case Study: To combat the negative environmental impacts that result from the production of needed materials, such as rubber, TBG maintains a portfolio of projects targeting Advanced and Alternative Materials. TBG is dedicated to developing the New Rubber Economy in Kazakhstan following the conclusion of the Drive4EU Project which studied the production chain of natural rubber and inulin from TKS Rubber Dandelions. TKS Rubber Dandelions are a hybrid plant native to Kazakhstan that can replace rubber in over 40,000 products as well as produces an inulin that can be used in confectionary products. TBG is working with partners located in Kazakhstan and the Netherlands to raise capital for the harvesting and production of the natural dandelion rubber as well as for the development of a suite of products using both the rubber and natural inulin that is produced by the dandelions.