Ten strains belonging to various Thermomonospora species were tested for their ability to hydrolyse the insoluble plant polyester cutin. One strain, the thermophile T. fusca ATCC 27730, was found to produce a highly inducible cutinase when grown in broth medium containing purified apple cv. Golden Delicious cutin. Apple pomace, tomato peel, potato suberin and commercial cork were also shown to induce cutinase production. Addition of glucose to the culture medium either at the beginning of fermentation or after 2 days of incubation in the presence of apple cutin led to repression of cutinase production. The cutinase was active against a wide range of cutins, including those isolated from other apple cultivars as well as tomato, cucumber, grapefruit, and green pepper. Cutinase activity in the induced culture supernatant fluids exhibited a half-life of over 60 min at 70 °C and a pH optimum of 11·0. Some potential applications for cutinases are discussed.