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Scientists Converted Plastic Bottles to Vanilla Flavoring

Plastic Bottles have been transformed into vanilla flavoring using genetically produced bacteria. This is the first time when a valuable chemical has been prepared from waste plastic.Recycling Plastic Bottles into more profitable materials could make the process of recycling far more attractive and operative.

At present, plastics lose about 95% of their value as a material after a single-use. Reassuring better collection and use of such waste is the key to undertaking the global pollution problem of plastic.Researchers have already established a mutant enzyme to break down the polyethylene terephthalate polymer, found in PET bottles. The enzyme converts the polymer into its basic units, called the terephthalic acid (TA).

Scientists have now used bacteria to convert TA into vanillin.Vanillin is commonly used in the food and cosmetics industries and is an important bulk chemical used to make drugs and medicines, cleaning products, and weed killers.About 85% of vanillin is currently being manufactured from chemicals resultant from fossil fuels.Joanna Sadler of the University of Edinburgh, who led the new work, said that this is the first example of using an organic system to upcycle plastic waste into a treasured industrial chemical, and it has very exciting inferences for the spherical economy.

 About 1 million Plastic Bottles are sold every minute worldwide, and just 14% of them are recycled.At this time, even those bottles that are being recycled can only be turned into dense fibers for clothing or carpets.The research, published in the journal called Green Chemistry, used engineered E-coli bacteria to convert TA into vanillin.

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