08 Jan 2018 |
World innovation news |
Sustainable Development, the Circular Economy and Environmental Issues
Edible Coating to Extend the Life of Fruits and Vegetables
Image from Edipeel: copyright
As part of his doctoral research in materials at the University of California, James Rogers travelled frequently between the Santa Barbara campus and a research laboratory located in Berkeley. Seeing the many farms along his route led him to think about ways to protect fruits and vegetables, much like the protective barrier formed by carbon and iron to prevent stainless steel from rusting. Hence the product Edipeel was marketed by Apeel Sciences, a business founded by James Rogers in 2016.
Edipeel is an edible coating, non-chemical, that extends the life of fruits and vegetables. It is designed specifically for each type of fruit and vegetable. Edipeel comes from food “waste”, such as orange or grape peel used to produce a puree.,
Various molecules extracted from the puree are converted into powder and sent directly to the farms. The powder, converted back into liquid form, is sprayed on fruits and vegetables during the cleaning cycle. When Edipeel dries on food, it forms a residual layer. This protective layer reduces water loss and oxidation of the fruit or vegetable, extending its lifespan by 3 to 5 times, all without refrigeration.
Edipeel could prove to be a revolutionary product in fruit and vegetable conservation and transport. Indeed, to ensure maximum lifespan, these foods are currently transported in refrigerated trucks that use a lot of energy and cost a lot of money. With Edipeel, the transportation mode may require less refrigeration. By extending food life, Edipeel is beneficial to farmers, grocers and restaurant owners because it reduces food waste.
Apeel Science is also working on a new product that would keep insects away without using chemicals.