WEST CONSHOHOCKEN, Pa.—A new standards group is forming with a focus on "alternative sources of natural rubber and natural rubber latex," according to ASTM International.
The new subcommittee is part of the standards organization's Committee D11 on Rubber and will be led by Tom Marsh, an ASTM member and former board chair. Marsh is global head for technical services, product development and laboratory services at natural rubber company Corrie MacColl International.
ASTM is encouraging "polymer experts" and members of regulatory bodies to join the new subcommittee to help develop new standards.
"This subcommittee will address the development of alternative polymers from natural sources other than traditional hevea-based origins," Marsh said in a statement. "Developing these standards will open up sourcing and supply in North America and Europe to complement global supply from Southeast Asia and Central America."
"The new subcommittee (D11.21) will be developing standards covering agricultural growth operations, processing, colloidal and physical testing of raw material, as well as in-process and finished goods made from raw material," ASTM said.
Both medical devices and personal protective equipment are listed as finished goods that are made from materials the committee will examine.
"Standards that will be developed by the subcommittee will benefit a full range of stakeholders, from growers to distributors; compounders to manufacturers; laboratories to consumers," Marsh said.
Those interested in helping develop new standards can become a member of the standards group at astm.org/JOIN.