Each year a third of the food produced – an estimated 1.3 bn tons – is destined for the bin. Particularly, because of their short window of ripeness, supermarket fruits like avocados or bananas are some of the main contributors to this staggering amount of food waste,
In an effort to solve this urgent problem, large supermarket chains in Germany and Denmark are now testing a potentially revolutionary solution: treating their avocados with a tasteless coating that has the potential to reduce fresh fruit and vegetable waste throughout the supply chain and cut the use of plastic packaging.
The groundbreaking technology was launched last year in the US, where it has helped to more than halve supermarkets’ waste of fresh produce including apples, asparaguses, limes, and lemons. Note, we wrote about this technolgy in one of our FUTURE OF FOOD features back in October.
The spray-on coating, which was developed by Apeel Sciences, controls the two main factors that cause fresh produce to spoil; the rate at which water escapes from the surface of fruit and vegetables, and the rate at which oxygen enters. This allows treated produce to stay fresh for longer.
Delaying spoilage of fresh produce not only could help mitigate some of the most pressing challenges like global hunger or environmental degradation but could also diminish food costs for both consumers and producers.