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Italian Senate Approves Plastic Bag Sanctions



Italian Senate Approves Plastic Bag Sanctions

Significant Revenue Opportunity Expected From Italy and Other European Nations
That are Exploring Similar Sanctions

EL SEGUNDO, Calif., Feb. 12, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Cereplast, Inc.
(OTCQB:CERP), a leading manufacturer of proprietary biobased, compostable and
sustainable bioplastics, is pleased to announce that the Italian Senate
approved the legislation that mandates the discontinuation of traditional
single-use plastic bags in favor of bioplastic bags or other alternatives, and
penalizes those who continue to use traditional plastic bags. Senator
Francesco Ferrante announced the approval of the Application Decree last week
stating, "Finally, we will make Italy the first plastic-free European country
for the single-use plastic bag sector." The Decree has been signed by the
Ministers and is currently undergoing the proper administrative process toward
formal publication. The sanctions will then become effective and applicable 60
days from publication.

Merchants must make the switch to biodegradable and compostable bags and stop
using traditional single-use plastic bags within 60 days from the date of
publication, or sanctions for non-compliance will be enforced. The fines for
non-compliance range between €2,500 and €25,000, and may be increased up to
four times the maximum violation if it applies to large quantities of bags, or
if the value of the goods exceeds 20% of the total use of the offender.

Italian Minister of the Environment Corrado Clini stated, "The opinion
expressed by the Senate is an important step to actually make our country
plastic-free. We will constantly monitor compliance to ensure that this
objective can be achieved quickly and effectively."

The Application Decree specifies the following:

  o Disposable bags used for the removal of goods must be compostable in
    accordance with the European standard for compostability: EN 13432:2002
  o Reusable bags with an external handle that are composed of polymers that
    do not meet EN 13432:2002 with a thickness exceeding 200 microns must
    contain a minimum 30% recycled plastic if intended for food use; the
    thickness must exceed 100 microns and contain a minimum 10% recycled
    plastic if not intended for food use.
  o Reusable bags without an external handle that are composed of polymers
    that do not meet EN 13432:2002 with a thickness greater than 100 microns
    must contain 30% recycled plastic if intended for food use; the thickness
    must exceed 60 microns and contain a minimum 10% of recycled plastic if
    not intended for food use.
  o Reusable bags for the removal of goods made from paper, fabrics made from
    natural fibers, polyamide fibers and materials other than polymers are
    permitted
  o The law does not permit the use of oxo-biodegradable additives

In the wake of this news, Arnaud Montebourg, the French Minister of Industrial
Renewal, stated, "Like Italy, France favors the use of biodegradable plastic
bags for all single-use bags. An important first step by the end of the year
will be to encourage the use of biodegradable shopping bags."

Mr. Frederic Scheer, Cereplast Chairman and CEO, commented, "The Senate
approval of the Application Decree is a significant milestone for the
bioplastics industry, which consequently presents Cereplast with significant
revenue opportunities in the Italian marketplace. We will continue to serve
the Italian market with our proprietary, compostable blown film resins while
preparing for the anticipated increase in demand once the sanctions are fully
implemented. We are happy to see that other countries such as France plan to
take Italy's lead with the adoption of bioplastic alternatives."

The European Union considered extending the Italian legislation to all of
Europe, but delayed these efforts for a year or two due to the recession. The
European market volume for flexible packaging is approximately €20 billion.
Italy represents 25% of this market volume at approximately 900,000 tons per
year, with several hundred million euro potential revenue for the bioplastics
industry in 2013.

Cereplast has benefited from the impact of this pending legislation as Italian
companies prepare for the coming sanctions. Cereplast recently reported
revenue totaling $800,000, largely as a result of these positive developments,
and sales data points toward similar sales volumes from the region as
experienced in 2011. See the following releases for more information:

Cereplast Announces $500,000 in New Revenue and Provides 2013 Outlook

Cereplast Provides Shareholder Update on Italian Application Decree &
Announces $300,000 in New Revenue

About Cereplast, Inc.

Cereplast, Inc. (OTCQB:CERP) designs and manufactures proprietary biobased,
sustainable bioplastics which are used as substitutes for traditional plastics
in all major converting processes - such as injection molding, thermoforming,
blow molding and extrusions - at a pricing structure that is competitive with
traditional plastics. On the cutting-edge of biobased plastic material
development, Cereplast now offers resins to meet a variety of customer
demands. Cereplast Compostables® resins are ideally suited for single-use
applications where high biobased content and compostability are advantageous,
especially in the food service industry. Cereplast Sustainables® resins
combine high biobased content with the durability and endurance of traditional
plastic, making them ideal for applications in industries such as automotive,
consumer electronics and packaging. Learn more at www.cereplast.com. You may
also visit the Cereplast social networking pages at Facebook.com/Cereplast,
Twitter.com/Cereplast and Youtube.com/Cereplastinc.

The Cereplast, Inc. logo is available at
http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=9567

CONTACT: Cereplast, Inc.
         Public Relations
         Nicole Robertson
         (310) 615-1900 x154
         nrobertson@cereplast.com
        
         Investor Relations:
         Alliance Advisors, LLC
         Alan Sheinwald
         914-669-0222
         asheinwald@allianceadvisors.net
        
         Valter Pinto
         914-669-0222 x201
         valter@allianceadvisors.net
         www.AllianceAdvisors.net

Cereplast, Inc. Logo
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