Plant-based Apeel coating slows produce spoilage

The plant-based Apeel coating, developed by Apeel Sciences, slows the rate of water loss and oxidation of fruit and vegetables, keeping them fresh two to three times as long.

Every plant on earth is protected by a peel or skin. The materials found in the skins and peels are ubiquitous and consumed every day.

A large part of food waste comes from produce that can’t be consumed before it starts to dry out or even rot. The main causes for this process to start are water loss and oxidation. To combat this, Apeel Sciences developed a coating that keeps the moisture inside produce and oxygen out, slowing down the rate at which the food spoils. By maintaining moisture and reducing oxidation, the coating supports the plant’s natural abilities to protect against environmental stressors. It does not require refrigeration, controlled atmosphere or preservatives.

Apeel is made out of plant-derived materials called lipids and glycerolipids, which naturally exist in peels, seeds, and pulp of fruits and vegetables. The coating can be made out of any fruits or vegetables, though some contain more lipids than others, especially plant parts that typically go unused after harvest like peels and seeds.

The coating is colourless, odourless and tasteless, but perfectly safe to eat and compliant with the US Food and Drug Administration regulations.

The Apeel coating is applied post-harvest and can be applied in a variety of ways, including rinse or dip methods.

Currently, avocados with the Apeel coating are available at major US grocery stores, but the company says that the coating improves the shelf life of more than two dozen types of fruits and vegetables, as shown in the video below.

Photos: Apeel Sciences