The demand for biodegradable polymers has grown at a rate of 20–30% per year .
The market segments include textiles, computers, mobile phones,
gardening, packaging and flushable hygiene products.
Poly(hydroxyalkanoates) and starch-based materials are the better known
important examples of such materials. DuPont's Sorona™ is based on
1,3-propanediol, which in turn is produced from corn sugar.
NatureWorks™ uses lactic acid that is again produced from the
fermentation of corn sugar . It is envisaged that future plastics would come from sugars, starch, cellulose and vegetable oils .
The underperformance of many bioplastics has delayed their wider
adoption. The synergy between polymer chemists and biotechnologists
should be able to meet this twin challenge of innovative production
routes and product improvement.
Improved gene therapy strategies, drug delivery vehicles, biosensors, molecular gates and switches and control in microfluidics  are other areas that constitute an exciting interface between polymer chemists and white biotechnology.