Polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA) are naturally occurring biopolymers, obtained from microorganisms. Properties like biodegradability and biocompatibility make PHA a part of today's commercial polymer industry. However, the production cost of PHA has been a great barrier to extend its application to large scale production. Substrates and usage of pure cultures constitute the main reason for its high production cost. On the other hand, rapid industrialization i.e., industrial sectors such as sugar, pulp and paper, fruit and food processing, dairies, slaughterhouses, and poultries, has resulted in the generation of the huge quantity of wastes. Consequently, becoming large source of environmental pollution and health hazard. This review emphasizes on the usage of various waste feedstocks obtained from industrial and agricultural industries as an alternate substrate for PHA production. As these waste materials are rich in organic material and also microbes, they can be the good starting material for PHA production. Additionally, advantages and economic importance of mixed cultures and also PHA applications are discussed. Future prospects and challenges in PHA production from waste feedstocks are also highlighted.
* Title and MeSH Headings from MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.