Bill Gates has invested in food tech company Apeel Sciences, who have devised a solution to the short life of an avocado. Avocados are renowned for being unripe to over-ripe in a short space of time, and this food tech start-up have been able to extend the shelf life of the fruit.
Apeel Sciences have developed an organic, invisible and edible spray that coats the fruit during the washing cycle before being distributed to retailers. This spray is made from discarded plant materials, and it is used as a shield preventing gases permeating the skin and locks in the moisture of the avocado.
The spray stops the avocado from ripening too quickly, and in turn could help prevent food waste. This also means that retailers can save money by not discarding as much food waste. James Rogers, CEO of Apeel Sciences spoke to Business Insider and said: “Refrigeration has been used to increase produce quality during transportation and storage.
But you lose the benefit of refrigeration when a fruit sits on a grocery store shelf or on a kitchen counter. With our technology, we’re able to dramatically reduce the rate that clock is ticking.”
In addition to their technology that prolongs the life of the fruit, the start-up is also working on Invisipeel. Invisipeel is designed to keep insects away, and is not widely available at present.
Costco is one of the major retailers using the Apeel technology, with other fruits and vegetables in their sights to apply the product to.