TOKYO  – Today, Kuraray Co., Ltd. announced a planned increase of its globally in-demand ethylene vinyl alcohol copolymer (EVOH resin; Kuraray trademark: EVAL™) production capacity in its bases of operation in the United States and Europe.

A total of 5,000 tons/year will be added to the capacity of the US and European bases of operation in 2024, with another 5,000 tons/year to be added in 2026. This 10,000-tons/year total capacity increase will bring global production capacity from the present 103,000 tons/year to 113,000 tons/year.

Also, as detailed in the Company’s PASSION 2026 medium-term management plan, a project team established last year is currently deliberating on the creation of a new base of operations in Asia, anticipating that the need for food packaging will continue to increase in Asia, where the market for EVOH resin is expanding significantly. To improve the capacity to react swiftly to customers’ needs, Kuraray intends to set up a technical center at the new Asian base of operations.

Background of Capacity Expansion

  • > EVAL™ is frequently used for food packaging due to its outstanding gas barrier qualities, which guard against deterioration of the contents.
  • > We expect that demand for EVAL™ will rise even further in the future as food packaging shifts to using just one type of material, as required for a circular economy, and as food products become more long-lasting to reduce food waste.
  • > The increase in EVAL™ demand had been centered primarily in industrialized nations, such as Japan and the United States, as well as those in Europe. However, demand is now rising in emerging nations. To secure a stable supply structure, Kuraray has determined that it is necessary to boost its EVAL™ production capacity.


About EVAL™

  • > EVAL™ is the Kuraray Co., Ltd. trademark for EVOH (ethylene vinyl alcohol copolymer) resin.
  • > In 1972, Kuraray became the first company to industrialize this functional resin, which has the highest level of gas impermeability among polymers (global market share: approx. 60%, Kuraray survey).



Kuraray America Inc.

Company name  Kuraray America, Inc.
President  Takaharu Kawahara
Capital  US$10.1 million (wholly owned subsidiary of Kuraray Holdings USA, Inc.)
Employees  Approx. 840
Business  Import and sale of fiber and textile products, resins, and chemicals; Production and sale of PVOH resins, polyvinyl butyral films, ethylene vinyl alcohol polymer resins (EVAL™), and thermoplastic elastomers
Location  3700 Bay Area Boulevard, Suite 680, Houston, TX. 77058 USA

EVAL Europe N.V.

Company name  EVAL Europe N.V.
President  Berend Bootsma
Capital  €29.7 million (wholly owned by Kuraray Co., Ltd.)
Employees  Approx. 170
Business  Production and sale of ethylene vinyl alcohol polymer resins (EVAL™)
Location  Haven1053, Nieuwe Weg1-Bus10 B-2070 Zwijndrecht (Antwerpen), Belgium


EVAL ™ Production Capacity(thousand tons/year)

Current Capacity

New Enhancement Enhanced Capacity


Kuraray America, Inc. 58 5 63 Texas, United States
EVAL Europe N.V. 35 5 40 Antwerp, Belgium
Kuraray Co., Ltd. 10 10 Okayama, Japan
Total 103 10 113


About Kuraray

Founded in 1926, Kuraray is a world leader in performance-based polymer and specialty materials technologies, including resins, chemicals, fibers, and textiles. The company operates many subsidiaries around the world, including Kuraray America, Inc., headquartered in Houston, Texas. Within the United States, Kuraray America, Inc. operates eight facilities, including top-of-the-line research and production sites located in Texas, North Carolina, South Carolina, and West Virginia.

To learn more about Kuraray Co. Ltd., visit

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McKenna Parr
Griffin Communications Group
(281) 335-0200;