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Valorisation of Sugarcane Bagasse for the Sustainable Production of Polyhydroxyalkanoates

With the world shifting towards renewable and sustainable resources, polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs) have attracted significant interest as an alternative to synthetic plastics. While possessing promising properties suitable for various applications, the production of PHAs has not yet reached a global commercial scale. The main reason is the high cost of production, which represents a major limitation. Sugarcane bagasse (SCB) is an abundant lignocellulosic waste around the world. Its use to produce PHA enhances the feasibility of producing PHAs at commercial scale. However, SCB requires pretreatment and hydrolysis steps to release the sugars prior to the microbial fermentation. The cost associated with these steps poses additional challenges for large-scale production. Another challenge is the release of inhibitors during the pretreatment process which can result in a low PHA yield. The development of a low cost, co-culture strategy for the bioconversion of SCB into PHAs, can represent a pivotal step towards the large-scale production of bioplastics. This review highlights the advancements made in recent years on the microbial production of PHA using SCB as potential feedstock, with a proposed biological strategy and circular economy model.

Publication date: 06/03/2024

Author: Soulayma Hassan

Reference: doi: 10.3390/su16052200

MDPI (sustainability)


This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 870292.