TOKYO (Sept. 4, 10:45 a.m. ET) — Teijin Ltd. said a Japanese eyeglass frame maker has become the first in the world to make a frame entirely from bioplastic, as part of Teijin’s push to improve performance and broaden markets for the material.

Tokyo-based Teijin said Sept. 3 it developed the frames with eyeglass maker Tanaka Foresight Inc., in Sabae City, and said it’s the first time bioplastic has been used for all the plastic parts in eyeglass frames.

Previously PLA could not be used in temples and much of the frame because of insufficient heat resistance of the material, but Teijin said it has improved the performance of its Biofront material to be comparable to oil-based plastics, with a melting point of 210 C. The material is also resistant to bacteria and bleaching, which is also a problem for some plastic eyeglass frames, the company said.

Tanaka, which makes 60 percent of the plastic parts used in eyeglass frames in Japan, expects to sell 50,000 to 100,000 pairs of the bioplastic eyeglass frames per year. The company will debut them at an optical fair in Tokyo in October.

Teijin said it plans to mass produce 5,000 metric tons of Biofront.