Forty-two Rhizobium strains obtained from different culture collections were evaluated quantitatively for poly(3-hydroxy-butyric acid) [PHB] production in shake flask culture. The majority of the strains produced the maximum amount of PHB during the late exponential or stationary phase of growth. Synthesis and accumulation of PHB in different species of Rhizobium were found to vary between 1-38% of their dry biomass. Growth and PHB production by the Rhizobium strain TAL-640 were greatly influenced by the C-source and D-mannitol was fundamental to both processes. The identity and purity of PHB isolated from TAL-640 have also been confirmed by UV-, IR- and 1H-NMR spectroscopic analyses.