The problem of low recycling levels in the U.S. has spurred plastics maker Metabolix to co-develop a line of biodegradable plastics with Archer Daniels Midland. The breakthrough bioplastic product, which is 100% corn-based, is durable and resistant to heat. However, to prevent a further strain on the price of corn, for which ethanol has been criticized, Metabolix has used a technology that genetically modifies switchgrass to grow PHAs, or plastic-like molecules, inside its leaves.

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