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Exilva next-generation bio-based additive replaces oil-based chemicals

Published 15 Dec 2022 (updated 7 Feb 2024) · 2 min read

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Quick information

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At a glance

  • Exilva is the world’s first commercially available cellulose fibril additive
  • Exilva’s large surface area is key to its performance: 1 gram of Exilva can cover a tennis court
  • Exilva is a powerful additive for controlling the flow and stability of liquid formulations

Exilva, a new type of product called cellulose fibrils (also known as nanocellulose), is a powerful additive created using cellulose from Scandinavian forests. It improves rheology, stability and structure in product formulations and is an all-natural, sustainable substitute for oil-based additives.

Additives are used extensively in adhesives, coatings, agricultural chemicals, cosmetics, household cleaning products, packaging materials, composites, etc. to improve product performance.

For many of these products, however, the majority of additives are derived from petroleum. Manufacturers seeking to solve problems, improve product performance or start innovation cycles therefore have a pressing need for innovative, eco-friendly alternatives in their toolbox.

Effective, innovative and sustainable

Exilva is a high-tech, highly effective performance enhancer. In layman’s terms, Exilva changes the way paint is applied to the wall or ceiling, how an adhesive is applied, how a cosmetic cream feels on the skin or how a gas/oxygen barrier performs.

Due to its high efficiency and robustness in harsh environments and its multifunctional characteristics, Exilva is suitable for a wide range of products and industries.

Exilva is all-natural and has a low carbon footprint. It is a nano/microfibrillated product sourced from Norwegian and Swedish forests that are managed in a sustainable and eco-friendly manner.

Exilva was developed by Borregaard – an innovator in bio-based products and operator of the world’s most advanced biorefinery.

Concrete benefits

Exilva provides manufacturers of intermediate and final goods with a sustainable solution to problems related to rheology, barriers and reinforcement, which are typically solved with the use of oil-derived products.

Functional examples of rheological effects include prevention of settling, no sagging or dripping, ability to apply or spray thicker layers, and more efficient application of adhesives. Functional examples of barrier effects include sound barrier properties, effective gas barrier, lighter packaging, and improved sunscreen effect through high surface area.

Exilva also helps manufacturers to reduce their carbon footprint, thereby enhancing their environmental profile, as well as opening up opportunities for innovation.

Market potential

Additives are used widely throughout the world. The market for rheology additives is currently close to USD 5 billion. The majority of these are still oil-derived and Exilva is a sustainable substitute. Market research estimates that the nanocellulose market will reach USD 700-1 000 million by 2024.

Exilva is the world’s first commercially available cellulose fibril product and is produced in Norway. Development began in 2005 and the commercial production facility was opened in 2016.

The Exilva project is a flagship funded by Bio-based Industries Joint Undertaking under the EU framework programme Horizon 2020. The main objective is to commercialise the Exilva product successfully and run the first industrial-scale plant.

Man in front of huge pile of timber
Exilva is sourced from Norwegian and Swedish forests that are managed in a sustainable and eco-friendly manner.

Ole Martin Kristiansen

Marketing Manager - Exilva, a product by Borregaard

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