The microbial synthesis of polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA) from organic wastes is a valuable process to valorize available renewable resources, such as food wastes and biological sludge. Bioplastics find many applications in various sectors, from medical field to food industry. However, persistent organic pollutants could be transferred from wastes to the final product. The present paper demonstrates that the use of municipal wastes in PHA production is safe for the environment and human health and provides a polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) profile in both commercial and waste-based PHA samples. PCB analysis in several PHA samples showed very low concentrations of the target analytes. Commercial PHA samples showed a similar PCB level with respect to PHA samples from municipal waste/sludge and higher than PHA samples from fruit waste. For all analyzed PCBs, detected concentrations were consistently lower than the ones reported in regulatory framework or guidelines.
- Municipal organic wastes
- Polychlorinated biphenyls