Biodegradation is the disintegration of materials through biological means such as by bacteria or fungi. Biodegradable matter is consumed by microorganisms and the process can be enhanced through biosurfactants which are produced by microorganisms. Biodegradable materials are generally organic, and they serve as nutrients for the microorganisms. Organic matter can be degraded aerobically or anaerobically, with out without the use of oxygen. The FTC defines a product as being biodegradable if the “entire product or package will completely breakdown and return to nature within a reasonably short period of time after customary disposal.”
Biodegradation is different from composting in that compostable materials break down in usable nutrients for the soil where products that are degradable just disintegrate or break down until there is nothing left. Generally, compostable materials break down within one to four months whereas biodegradable materials can take up to a year.
Materials are considered biodegradable if they are organically made from living organisms, like plant, animal, or other substances. Some artificial materials can also be biodegradable if they are composed of matter similar enough to be put to use by microorganisms.
Contract Laboratory has helped many companies outsource their Biodegradation testing such as the Test Requests listed below:
- Materials Laboratory needed for Biodegradation testing of Plastics as per ASTM D5511, Standard Test Method for Determining Anaerobic Biodegradation of Plastic Materials Under High-Solids Anaerobic-Digestion Conditions and ASTM 5526, Standard Test Method for Determining Anaerobic Biodegradation of Plastic Materials Under Accelerated Landfill Conditions etc.
- OECD Environmental Laboratory needed for OECD 301C Test for Biodegredation Rate
- USA lab needed to test new plastic films for anaerobic and aerobic biodegredation.
- EPA GLP Environmental toxicology laboratory needed for biodegredation testing per OECD method 306 and aquatic toxicity (72 hour algae, 48 hour crustacean and 96 hour fish)
These are just a few of the biodegradation outsourcing projects that Contract Laboratory helped to facilitate. To view more, visit Incoming Laboratory Test Requests.
Need a Laboratory for Biodegradation Testing? Submit biodegredation Test Request
If you have any other questions about Biodegradation Testing, please call us at 1-855-377-6821