Biodegradable materials are a new type of material developed during the 1980s as the environmental and energy conflicts emerged. Being a naturally degradable material, it served a unique role in environmental protection. Its research and development has been growing rapidly. As a most effective solution to "white pollution", these materials have caught the attention of environmental experts, material experts and people in many fields。

According to the definition of American Society of Testing Materials (ASTM): biodegradable materials are polymer materials that can be degraded or enzymatically hydrolyzed by chemical/biological/physical interactions with bacteria, fungi, algae and other natural microorganisms.