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  Digital Catalogue for Technology and Products Development

   Technology and Product Development

    Basic Information

Technology developed: Antimicrobial food packaging for enhanced shelf-life from fruits and vegetable wastes - Materials Cy (TP19766177649)
Category: Product (Hardware/Material/Software)
Details of Inventor(s):
Inventor Institution/Organization/Company Department Designation
Dr. Mudrika Khandelwal IIT Hyderabad MSME Associate Professor
Technical Application Area: Healthcare
If 'Other', please specify:
Please give more details of new technical application area:
About 16% of fruits & vegetables, valued at Rs 40,811 crore, were lost, according to an analysis of production data between 2012 and 2014, by the Central Institute of Post Harvest Engineering and Technology, Ludhiana (Punjab). Given this it becomes imperative to develop food storage solutions which are affordable and at the same time environment friendly, unlike cold storages. The commonly used food packaging materials are passive and do not actively target the reason for decay. Limited work has been done in the area of active packaging which involves a matrix with an active antimicrobial ingredient. Some bacterial cellulose & silver based work has been reported. However, the particle size and amount of silver incorporated was large. Our previous work has shown that tomatoes can be preserved for over 30 days at room temperature with less than 2 wt% of silver nanoparticles in the composite. Also the particle size obtained was lesser than those reported. The importance of this work has even been recognized by the hon'ble Vice president of India in his recent tweet. Further we intend to use herbs for this purpose. Three variations of silver nitrate (AgNO3) to reducing agent concentrations have been tried to vary the silver nanoparticle dimension. AgBC composites exhibited 99.9% antimicrobial activity which was sustained up to 72 h against spoiled food derived mixed microbial culture. On the other hand, only 90% activity was observed with colloidal AgNPs due to aggregate formation. Therefore, the AgBC composites having less than 2% silver can be used as a lining of regular food packaging material to extend shelf life till 30 days 5. Toxicity due to high amount of silver can be prevented with these composites and can be safely used in healthcare applications such as food packaging, wound dressing, hospital bed lining and surgical apparels.
Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Hyderabad
Affiliated Ministry: Ministry of Education
Type of technology development: Indigenous
Does the technology help in replacing any import items currently
procured from outside India?
Does the technology have export potential? Yes
Category of Technology developed: Futuristic
Stage of Development: Lab-Scale
Please describe in detail including the TRL Level:
Our preliminary work has shown that antimicrobial materials can help in preventing the microbial decay of fruits and vegetables, given the other properties of the material are sufficiently good. We have shown these using silver nanoparticles in bacterial cellulose matrix which acts as a barrier for burst release. We intend to integrate with current packaging materials, rather than replacing keeping in mind the economics and ease of adoption. The uniqueness of this work is that a vegetable/fruit waste derived material is being utilized for preservation of fruits and vegetables. This is compliant with creating a cyclic material economy. We are right now at TRL 3 the proof of concept has been done with limited in vitro models


Applications: In our study, the developed food packaging material has preserved the shelf life of fruits at room temperature without refrigeration for 30 days without any microbial decay. This could be used to preserve perishable fruits and vegetables and imported fruits, Potential user or agency that would be keen to utilize your development: 1. Agriculture and packaged food industry will greatly benefit from the output of this project. Farmers who suffer losses due to decay of fruits and vegetables will be able to preserve for a longer time and sell after finding a buyer at the suitable time. This will substantially improve the farmer’s income and reduce risks 2. The fresh produce whole sellers and warehouses and retailers also incur losses due to microbial manifestation. The intended product will also boast returns for them and the Indian economy. 3. Most importantly, if the produce can be preserved, it will also ultimately reach those who can’t afford and may be bring down prices due to reasonable availability. The outcome may also be extended for healthcare.
Advantages: 1. The majority of materials used for food packaging are synthetic polymers (PE, PP, PVP, PET etc.) and are practically non-degradable, posing a severe global environmental impact. They are hydrophobic which enhances biofilm formation and suffer from issues with porosity. In addition, packaging material should be neither absolutely impervious to gases nor completely allow the gases, optimum porosity is required to the growth of anaerobic bacteria and prevent the growth of aerobic bacteria respectively. 3. Bacterial cellulose is a biodegradable material, which degrades in soil within 2 weeks. It can be produced from fermented fruits, vegetables, peels, molasses (sugarcane byproduct) which creates a cyclic material economy. 4. Commercially available packaging materials do not target antimicrobial action to enhance shelf life. 5. Our preliminary work has shown that bacterial cellulose loaded with <2 w/w% of silver has shown to preserve tomatoes for over 30 days in normal room condition. 6. Essential oils are also used in combination to attain synergistic anti-microbial activity. 7. We can use our composite as a small patch on fruit 8. Design of packaging material with antimicrobial patches.

    Technology Inputs:

Imported Equipment/Spare Parts:
Equipment/Spare Parts Year ITC-HS Code
Indigenous Equipment/Spare Parts:
Equipment/Spare Parts Year ITC-HS Code
Imported Raw Materials:
Raw Materials Year ITC-HS Code
Indigenous Raw Materials:
Raw Materials Year ITC-HS Code
Existing R&D Facilities used:
Facilities Year ITC-HS Code

    R&D Investment:

R&D investment (Rs. in Lakhs):                    
Indian Source (Rs.) Foreign Source (Rs.) Year
0 0 NA

   Patents & Publications:

Filed Patents (No.) Granted Patents (No.) Year
0 0 NA
Submitted (No.) Published (No.) Year
0 1 2018-19

    Commercialization Potential:

Who are the Potential Licensees? Waycool Foods and Products Pvt Ltd, Waycool Foods and Products Pvt Ltd, C & D, Block 3, Central warehouse Corporation, Ayyavupuram, Ayyavupuram, Chennai, Tamil Nadu 600092 Karthik Jayaraman Co Founder And CEO Contact No. : +9094040990 Support (in cash): 2000000 (INR) Support (in kind): 0 (INR) Name of Competent Authority : Karthik Jayaraman Web Address: Brief Details on Industry: WayCool is a social enterprise started to transform the agri-products supply chain. Realizing that the food security problem in India was predominantly one of supply chain efficiency, WayCool built a team of industry talent to tackle the problem. WayCool Foods and Products is a fresh-produce distribution startup with the revenue of Rs 130 crore, and handle around 100 tons of fruits and vegetables a day.
What commercially available products address
the same problem?
Company Product Problem Addressed
Would you like to develop this invention further with
corporate research support?
Would you be interested in participating in cluster based
programs for commercialization research or business
planning for your invention?
      Submitted by: The Dean R and D Date of Submission: 5-8-2020

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