6-Phenylhexanoic acid (6PHxA), 7-phenylheptanoic acid (7PHpA), 9-phenylnonanoic acid (9PNA), 11-phenylundecanoic acid (11PUA), 9-p-tolylnonanoic acid (9TNA) and 9-p-styrylnonanoic acid (9SNA) were prepared and evaluated as substrates for cell growth and polyester production by Pseudomonas oleovorans and Pseudomonas putida. P. putida was more effective than P. oleovorans for producing polyesters from these aromatic substrates. Poly-3-hydroxyalkanoates, PHAs, were obtained from 6PHxA, 7PHpA, 9PNA and 11PUA. The PHAs produced from all of these substrates contained mostly 3-hydroxy-5-phenylvalerate (H5PV) and 3-hydroxy-6-phenylhexanoate (H6PHx) units. Polymer yields ranging from 3 to 47% of cell dry weight were obtained with molecular weights ranging from 156 000 to 37 000 and polydispersities from 2.3 to 2.9. Cofeeding of most of these substrates with nonanoic acid produced mixtures of two different PHAs with different glass transitions, one in the region of -8 to 12 degrees C for the PHA with arylalkyl substituent groups, and one in the region of -14 to -35 degrees C for the PHA from nonanoic acid. The PHA from 9TNA also had a crystalline melting transition. Copyright (C) 1996 Elsevier Science Ltd.