This start-up can make avocados last twice as long before going bad

The Washington Post
By Caitlin Dewey
June 19, 2018

The new avo­ca­dos rolling out to Mid­west Cost­co stores this week don’t look like the future of fresh pro­duce. But they’re test­ing tech­nol­o­gy that could more than dou­ble the shelf life of veg­eta­bles and fruits.

That tech­nol­o­gy, devel­oped by the start-up Apeel Sci­ences, con­sists of an invis­i­ble, plant-based film that rein­forces the avo­ca­dos’ own skin. The com­pa­ny hopes to expand to stores nation­wide — as well as to a range of oth­er pro­duce.

Experts say the prod­uct, which has quadru­pled shelf life in a lab set­ting, has the poten­tial to make foods less per­ish­able — with huge boons for con­sumers, the envi­ron­ment and the food indus­try.

Fresh fruit and veg­eta­bles account for more than 40 per­cent of wast­ed food in the Unit­ed States, accord­ing to the food waste coali­tion ReFED. Apeel and oth­er com­pa­nies are work­ing on tech­nolo­gies that could help slash those fig­ures, and enable pro­duce to trav­el far­ther and with less refrig­er­a­tion, improv­ing qual­i­ty, selec­tion and car­bon foot­print.

Already, we’re able to bring avo­ca­dos to places that didn’t have access to top-qual­i­ty before, or that often ran out,” said James Rogers, Apeel’s chief exec­u­tive. “It’s so reward­ing to me per­son­al­ly to bring this fruit to places that wouldn’t nor­mal­ly have that access.”

To read the full arti­cle, vis­it The Wash­ing­ton Post.