Thermoplastic materials are almost entirely derived from oil, a dwindling natural resource. After years of investigation some viable alternatives are starting to come to fruition. However, out of 245 million tonnes of plastics produced worldwide only 0.36 million tonnes (0.15%) are currently bio-based plastics. Growth over the next decade is predicted to be about 20% per annum although by 2020 this will still represent only a small share of the total (3.5 million tonnes, 1.4%). Potentially, 90% of all polymers could be replaced by bio-based equivalents.