Last month, this publication was introduced to Apeel Sciences a Gates Foundation-backed company responsible foran innovative plant-derived solution that reportedly slows down the rate of water loss and oxidation in perishable foods. Fin Slater caught up with Michelle Masek,Communications Advisor atApeel Sciencesto discuss scalability, single-use plastics, and the future of food packaging.
Could you give us an introduction to the Apeel product?
Apeel is a plant-derived solution that doubles to triples the shelf life of many types of fresh produce reducing reliance on refrigeration, plastic packaging, and controlled atmosphere throughout the supply chain. Made of materials found in every bite of fruit, Apeel creates an exceptionally thin, edible peel on the outside of produce, creating an optimal microclimate inside fruits and vegetables that slows the rate of water loss and oxidation the primary causes of spoilage. Apeel Sciences is fighting the global food waste crisis by using natures tools to extend the freshness of produce, prevent waste and promote more sustainable practices. Apeel is FDA GRAS, approved for USDA Certified Organic and conventional produce, and in 2019 gained regulatory approval by the European Commission.
For suppliers and retailers, Apeel is the only postharvest solution that creates an optimal microclimate inside every fruit or vegetable, maintaining quality, extending shelf life, and transportability with reduced reliance on refrigeration and controlled atmosphere.
What was the R&D process that lead up to the creation of the product?
While working on his Ph.D. in Materials, Apeel Sciences founder and CEO, James Rogers, will tell you he spent a few years watching paint dry in an effort to develop an energy-harvesting solar paint that would help democratize clean energy.
One day, while driving through lush farmland on his way home to Santa Barbara from the Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, he heard a story on the radio about global hunger and wondered how can so many people be hungry if were able to grow such an abundance of food?
It turns out that there isnt an issue with growing the food we needthe culprit is spoilage. James wondered if a barrier could be created for food that would slow down the rate of spoilage and discovered that the materials needed already exist in every bite of food we eat. The result was a breakthrough application of materials science to food preservation, and Apeel Sciences was born.
Apeel Sciences was founded in 2012 with a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to develop a product to reduce post-harvest food loss in developing countries. Today, Apeel Sciences has developed products for multiple USDA Organic Certified and conventional produce categories, and the company works with partners ranging from smallholder farmers and local organic growers to the worlds largest food brands to make better quality fruits and vegetables available for all.
Apeel is made of plant-derived materials lipids and glycerolipids that exist in the peels, seeds, and pulp of all the fruits and vegetables we already eat. When creating Apeel, we specifically target these materials.
Key factors that determine the shelf life of produce, such as water loss and ripening rates, are governed by their surface properties, including native wax composition, wax crystal density and size, roughness, and porosity. We consider all of these factors when we optimize a formulation for a particular category of produce, where molecularly, we adjust the combination of lipids in the formulation to be best suited to a given produce surface to maintain shelf-life.
What applications/demand does the product seek to meet?
Food waste in Europe has reached a staggering 88 million tonnes annually, with associated costs estimated at 143 billion euros. By using Apeel as a solution for extending produce shelf life and helping reduce food waste, U.S. retailers have been able to sell Apeel-treated avocados at no additional charge to the shopper or member.
In trials, weve seen a doubling to tripling of shelf-life across many dozens of types of fruits and vegetables. The length of shelf life extension depends on the type of produce, its age, and the conditions it is subject to along the supply chain, among other factors.
What makes Apeel technologically innovative/interesting?
Nature is our greatest teacher, and we have successfully proven that we can use these learnings to improve and prolong the quality of produce while reducing waste. From strawberries to peppers, every fruit and vegetable has a protective peel or skin that nature uses to keep it fresh. By enhancing this with a little extra peel, Apeel can double to triple the shelf life of many types of fresh produce, which promotes more sustainable growing practices and less food waste from farm to retail shelf to home.
In addition to food waste reduction, Apeels technology has the ability to reduce single-use plastic waste in the produce industry. In fall 2019, Apeel announced a partnership with world-renowned supplier Houwelings Group, providing them access to Apeels plant-derived technology to replace the single-use plastic wraps on its English cucumbers while still maintaining the vegetables shelf life. This partnership is expected to reduce plastic waste from reaching our landfills by over 60,000 pounds per year.
How does this product fit into the sustainable future of the packaging industry?
Apeel's technology is enabling the shift to more sustainable solutions a priority for everyone across the food supply chain. Fruits and vegetables already have packaging in the form of skins and peels, and Apeel is drawing on what nature already creates in order to help the industry increase the sustainability of its offerings. By extending the shelf life of produce, transformations and savings at every stage of the supply chain can occur. One recent example of this is Apeel Asparagus a vegetable which currently depends heavily on air freight for transport. Apeel reduces reliance on air freight by maintaining quality for longer, opening up the possibilities of arrivals by sea resulting in approximately 1/10 of the cost of transport and 1/8 the GHG emissions when compared to air.
What are your expectations for the future of the product?
Coming off of the heels of our European expansion, we hope to be a global company, servicing many more countries around the world. In the U.S., Apeel avocado retail programs have demonstrated a 50% reduction in retail waste on average and were eager to make these food waste reduction benefits a reality for suppliers and retailers around the world. We are excited about continuing to unlock the potential of plant-derived technology to help solve some of the biggest challenges we are facing right now in the area of food waste and its impact on climate change.
- Cryonics, brain preservation and the weird science of cheating death - CNET - July 6th, 2020
- Nano One update: progress on battery technology - The Armchair Trader - July 6th, 2020
- Highland Copper Announces Further Extension of White Pine Closing - GlobeNewswire - July 6th, 2020
- Registry is an arm of the Court and an extension of its dignity, says SC - The Leaflet - July 6th, 2020
- Hacking the Apocalypse: Your new guide to surviving the end of the world - MSN Money - July 6th, 2020
- How to get rid of fruit flies in your house | AgriLife Today - AgriLife Today - July 6th, 2020
- 'Life in the old dog yet': Hackney Law Centre thanks donors as it celebrates 40th anniversary - Hackney Citizen - July 6th, 2020
- David and Victoria Beckham plan garden extension with 91 metre lake at their Great Tew home - Banbury Guardian - July 6th, 2020
- Controlled Intelligent Packaging, Preservation and Shelf-Life Extension Market 2020 | by Manufacturers | by Countries | by Types and by Applications |... - July 5th, 2020
- Extension offers online session to help ag producers and others manage stress - Nevada Today - July 5th, 2020
- North America Blueberry Extract Market is expected to expand at the highest CAGR By 2027 | Top Business Players: Life Extension, Mazza Innovation,... - July 5th, 2020
- Kitchens Across America Trust Eat Cleaner Fruit + Veggie Wash, Available This July in New Value Size to Give People Kitchen Confidence | 2020-07-02 |... - July 5th, 2020
- Bruce Power partners give thousands to local charities - BlackburnNews.com - July 5th, 2020
- Antioxidant Supplement, Market Study for 2020 to 2026 Providing Information on Key Players, Growth Drivers and Industry Challenges|Vibrant Health, AST... - July 5th, 2020
- New Survey Reveals 74 Percent of Americans are Concerned that Vitamins and Supplements are not Backed by Trustworthy Research - PRNewswire - June 13th, 2020
- Maintaining health and nutrition while staying at home - WSAW - June 13th, 2020
- Why a decision on a second US plutonium-pit-production factory should be delayed - Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists - June 13th, 2020
- The Role Of Nuclear Power In A Clean Energy System - Seeking Alpha - June 13th, 2020
- Six months to break the deadlock on life after Brexit - The Advocate - June 13th, 2020
- Nukes in Space: the Extinction Rebellion Yet to Be - CounterPunch.org - CounterPunch - June 13th, 2020
- Further extension to mother-and-baby homes inquiry - RTE.ie - June 13th, 2020
- Enel Awarded 106.3 MW in Italy in GSE's Second Auction - Saurenergy - June 5th, 2020
- Has the United States Abandoned Arms Control? - War on the Rocks - June 5th, 2020
- Aeris Resources to acquire producing gold mine from Evolution in transformational move - Proactive Investors Australia - June 5th, 2020
- Artax Biopharma Announces Series B Financing Extension to Advance First-in-Class Autoimmune Disease Therapy - P&T Community - June 5th, 2020
- Drivers granted automatic licence renewal extension - Farming Life - June 5th, 2020
- COVID-19 Impact on Melatonine Market Research Report: Probable Key Development To Be Observed Market States And Outlook Across By 2026 - News Distinct - June 5th, 2020
- Reishi Mushroom Supplements Market 2020- Analysis And In-Depth Research On Market Size, Trends, Emerging Growth Factors And Forecast To 2026 - Weekly... - June 5th, 2020
- Tuskegee one of three HBCU land-grants awarded $1.6M USDA Centers of Excellence grant - Tuskegee University - June 5th, 2020
- Eye Health Supplements Market 2020 Growth by Opportunities, Application, Driver, Current Trends and Forecast by 2026 - Cole of Duty - June 1st, 2020
- The Dak Prescott extension: What have the Cowboys offered? Plus, where negotiations stand - The Dallas Morning News - June 1st, 2020
- Milk Thistle Health Tonic Market In Depth Research with Industry Driving Factors, Consumer Behaviour Analysis, Future Trends, Key Players and Forecast... - June 1st, 2020
- Explained: What RBIs extension of loan moratorium means - The Indian Express - June 1st, 2020
- How to stop earwigs and coreopsis beetles: Ask an expert - oregonlive.com - June 1st, 2020
- Orthopedic Extension Devices Market 2019 | How The Industry Will Witness Substantial Growth In The Upcoming Years | Exclusive Report By Industry... - June 1st, 2020
- Goldstar Insurance and Prudential partner to offer COVID -19 cover - Uganda - June 1st, 2020
- Punjab Agricultural University gives warm send-off to Bhalla - Hindustan Times - June 1st, 2020
- Wife honors husband with continuing education center - Atlanta Journal Constitution - April 11th, 2020
- Letters To the Editor | Opinion - westvalleyview.com - April 11th, 2020
- The Military's E-6 Mercury Is Far Deadlier Than The F-35 Stealth Fighter - The National Interest - April 11th, 2020
- Extend New START -- The World Can't Afford a U.S.-Russia Nuclear Arms Race Too - Just Security - April 11th, 2020
- Brandon Scherff's excited to be in Washington, looking to be Redskin for life - Redskins Wire - April 11th, 2020
- "Life Won't Be Same Ever": Odisha First To Extend Lockdown Till April 30 - NDTV News - April 11th, 2020
- Get Growing: Good news, good riddance to gypsy moth caterpillars this year - The Recorder - April 11th, 2020
- Alkane Resources regional drilling south of TGO returns further broad, high-grade gold - Proactive Investors Australia - April 11th, 2020
- He gave so much of himself to improving life in Douglas: Tributes paid to Billy Coleman - Echo Live - April 11th, 2020
- WAIVER EXTENSION, REVISED TIMING OF ENFORCEMENT - pa.gov - March 24th, 2020
- The U.S. Military's Behind-the-Scenes Moves To Protect Nuclear Readiness Amid Coronavirus - Newsweek - March 24th, 2020
- Mine life extension puts Kisladag back on the map - Creamer Media's Mining Weekly - February 24th, 2020
- WVU aims to make an impact in everyday West Virginians' lives - WV News - February 24th, 2020
- Over the Garden Gate: Bees are native pollinators - Ellwood City Ledger - February 24th, 2020
- What is the real cost of a Richards Avenue extension? - Santa Fe New Mexican - February 24th, 2020
- New Gold updates Rainy River and New Afton mine plans - The Northern Miner - February 24th, 2020
- Responsible Battery Coalition Applauds University of Michigan Research on Lithium-Ion Battery Degradation Calls Research Important Step in Educating... - February 24th, 2020
- Bruce Power marks next step of major project collaboration with ATS in Cambridge - TheRecord.com - February 24th, 2020
- Edited Transcript of ELD.TO earnings conference call or presentation 21-Feb-20 4:30pm GMT - Yahoo Finance - February 24th, 2020
- Senate panel agrees adding time to safe haven for babies a good step - KSL.com - February 24th, 2020
- Swine building maintenance the topic of statewide workshops - Discover Muscatine - February 24th, 2020
- Stress it is not a sign of weakness | News, Sports, Jobs - Morning Journal News - February 24th, 2020
- Arcadis working with the Georgia Department of Transportation to improve traffic congestion - Benzinga - February 24th, 2020
- Life With GDPR: Episode 36- Extension of British Airways Response Time for Proposed Fine - JD Supra - February 8th, 2020
- Max Muncys extension helps the argument for new service time rules - Beyond the Box Score - February 8th, 2020
- Noah Rubin's Behind The Racquet With Robert Ryland | Tennis 10sBalls - 10sBalls - February 8th, 2020
- Satellites: The $500 billion business | Industry Trends - IBC365 - February 8th, 2020
- The many lives of charcoal - Penn: Office of University Communications - February 8th, 2020
- Space Mining the Quest for the Worlds First Trillionaire Amid Earths Growing Resource Scarcity - Wccftech - February 8th, 2020
- [The Turning Point] How a family car led to the idea of deep tech startup ION Energy - YourStory - February 8th, 2020
- Trump travel ban extension leaves Africans angry and disappointed - The Guardian - February 8th, 2020
- Los Angeles Lakers: Not trading for Andre Iguodala was the right move - Lake Show Life - February 8th, 2020
- The Ethics of Radical Life Extension | TalkDeath - January 27th, 2020
- Boldly Audition for These Sci-Fi Gigs in Honor of 'Star Trek: Picard' - Backstage - January 27th, 2020
- 3 Ways To Reboot Your Life In 2020 - Forbes - January 27th, 2020
- Watch: Kirk Cousins fumbles away comeback in Pro Bowl - Bring Me The News - January 27th, 2020
- Streetfighter and the future of the Challenger 2 - Army Technology - January 25th, 2020
- Iceni Courage to Be Revamped - Offshore WIND - January 25th, 2020
- The U.S. is Boosting Production of Nuclear Bomb Cores (For More Nuclear Weapons) - The National Interest Online - January 25th, 2020
- How Does the Air Force's F-16 Stack up Against the Best Chinese and Russian Fighters? - The National Interest Online - January 25th, 2020
- Race to exploit the worlds seabed set to wreak havoc on marine life - The Guardian - January 25th, 2020
- Rangers broadcasts to remain on 105.3 The Fan (KRLD-FM) after club signs multi-year extension - The Dallas Morning News - January 25th, 2020
- Pakistans judges briefly stand up to the army - The Economist - January 25th, 2020