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Production of the polymer, poly 3-hydroxybutyrate (PHB), by Methylobacterium sp. ZP24 increased when sucrose-containing medium was partially substituted with low concentrations of several organic acids. Low concentrations of formate could enhance the PHB yield 2.4-fold and bring down the production time by 12 h. The use of formate as a growth enhancer could be successfully scaled up to the 18 litre level. The possible mechanism of enhancement is discussed.