The world’s population is currently at 7.8 billion and is set to hit 10 billion by 2050 or even earlier. More people means more food needed – unfortunately, it also means more food wasted. About a third of all the food produced today goes to waste, and both businesses and governments are scrambling to find answers to cope with and reduce high volumes of waste.
Several startups are making innovative use of technology to detect food spoilage, keep food fresh for longer and process food waste in environmentally sustainable ways. While many of these tech solutions may seem avant-garde now, they may well be the pillars on which we base our anti-waste projects in the near future. Let us take a look:
1. Non-invasive and real-time monitoring of the first signs of spoilage
2. Software to monitor produce freshness
3. Biotech to improve the appearance of the produce
4. Using Anaerobic Digestion to produce biogas
AD is nothing but a process by which food waste breaks down to produce a methane-rich gas (biogas) used as sustainable energy via CHP and high-quality natural fertiliser.
Waste2ES, a food waste management and recycling solutions company in Hertfordshire, has slowly emerged as a pioneer in combating food waste.
Their systems implement Aerobic and Anaerobic Digestion technologies to unlock, drain and remove the water held naturally in the fabric of food waste, and consolidate the food’s caloric content. The systems economically convert food waste into an odour-free and valuable stored energy form.
5. Antimicrobial tech for safe-keeping produce
6. Low-tech solutions in developing nations
While the technology has existed since the 1980s, it is only now being widely promoted in Asia, Africa, Central America and the Caribbean.
The original hermetic bag was designed at Purdue University and is now being sponsored by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.