Extended the shelf life of fruits with an innovative non-toxic and reusable layer on wrapper – Indian Scientist

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how to extend the shelf life of fruits and vegetables, shelf life of fruits, Graphene oxide Nanoparticles
Source: Institute of Nano Science and Technology

Graphene oxide Nanoparticles- Composite Paper

The Indian scientists have made a composite paper made of carbon (graphene oxide) loaded with preservatives that can be applied as wrappers to help extend the shelf life of fruits. Unlike the present preservative dipping technology, wherever the preservatives are adsorbed by the fruit, making chronic toxicity to the customers, preservatives the wrapper issues the preservative only during need. This wrapper can be reused, which is not achievable with the present technology.

No need for Wax and Resin

Fruits are especially perishable. Therefore 50% of fruits produced are wasted, causing significant damages. Conventional maintenance relies on coating the preservative with the resin, wax, or edible polymer, making chronic fitness problems.

To express this difficulty, a team of researchers led by Dr. P. S Vijayakumar from the Institute of Nano Science and Technology, in Mohali, an Autonomous Institute of the Department of Science and Technology, Ministry of Science and Technology, the Government of India observed an option that could be produced from waste. It would not begin to adsorption of preservatives in the fruit.

Triggering the preservatives

The initiated graphene oxide-loaded molecules were then packed with preservatives. When cast into paper for fruit wrapping, this significant preservative-loaded graphene oxide assures that the fruit is not burdened with toxic prophylaxes. But when the fruit over-ripens or becomes infested by pathogens, the bitterness increases by the secretion of acids, critic, and oxalic acids triggering the preservatives’ discharge to protect the fruit.

Carbon Wrapper

Otherwise, the preservative visits among the carbon wrapper. In the fruit dipping process, the preservative will be needed along with the fruit, whereas the wrapper can be re-used later for the fruit’s consumption to preserve the subsequent batch of fruits.

To support this non-toxic and reusable wrapping paper, the team helped the carbon matrix incubate with the preservative. Following the incubation for 24 hr at room temperature, the resultant was washed many times to eliminate the additional preservatives.

And finally, this carbon-preservative composite was made into paper. That job has been published in the journal ‘ACS used materials and interface.’

“Already waste-derived carbon materials are known to harbor huge amount of organic molecule loading. Hence the preservative-loaded carbon has been made and cast into paper for fruit preservation. Improving the capacity of carbon to hold organic molecules supported us to develop this product,” adds Dr.Vijayakumar.

Healthy Fruits 

This novel product can serve the farmers and food industry by extending the shelf life of fruits. Practicing this wrapper for the fruit will also ensure that the customer gets the fruits healthy, as we have noticed an improvement in the phenol content. The production of this graphene fruit covering requirements only the carbon produced from the heating of biomass. Hence it will also help biomass consumption and employment generation.

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