Today’s Solutions: April 23, 2024

We’ve previously reported about the use of kombucha for a number of innovative reasons. Like stylish compostable shoes, sustainable wood alternatives, and as the key ingredient to boosting your brain and gut health. This time kombucha is helping us humans out in a different walk of life, water filtration.

As time goes on, the pores in current water filtration systems get clogged with dirt and biofilms which prevent the safe transformation of clean water. Biofilms are an accumulation of bacteria, amoeba, algae, and other microorganisms that can be extremely dangerous for human health if they manage to slip through the membrane. Preventing filter clogging is a huge problem in commercial settings.

Enter kombucha! A new study from Montana Technological University (MTU) and Arizona State University (ASU), has shown that the kombucha symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast (SCOBY) can tackle this problem much better than its commercial counterpart. The SCOBY is the fuzzy layer of living goodness you may have seen sitting on top of a kombucha culture. The results, published in ACS ES&T Water, show the new biomaterial filters performed 19 to 40 percent better at preventing clogging and biofilm formation.

Contaminated drinking water is linked to 2000 deaths of children globally each day. The team hopes that using living filtration membranes like kombucha, a sustainable and accessible solution can be provided worldwide and access to clean drinking water can be improved.

Source study: ACS ES&T WaterLiving Filtration Membranes Demonstrate Antibiofouling Properties

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