The Superworms Making A Meal Of Polystyrene Waste
Source: The Guardian.
Beetle larvae that can shred and eat polystyrene may provide alternative methods of breaking down and upcycling plastic waste, new research suggests.
The larvae of Zophobas morio, a species of beetle, are commonly known as superworms and contain several gut enzymes that are capable of digesting polystyrene, Australian scientists have found.
Polystyrene is a widely used plastic, found in its solid form in everyday items such as containers, lids and disposable cutlery. Polystyrene foam, which is lightweight and consists largely of air, is used in packaging and as an insulation material.
Photo credit: Superworms mechanically shred polystyrene foam before enzymes in their gut break it down. Photograph: University of Queensland.