Plastic is one word, that has totally become a menace to the environment. Unfortunately, we cannot seem to get away from plastic. Right from disposable plastic cutlery, food packaging to accessories, it’s ingrained in our day to day lives. Countries all across the world are fighting plastic pollution in their own ways. India built over 1 lakh km of road from plastic waste. A US-based scuba diving group recycled ocean plastic into face masks, and the list goes on. Researchers at e Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Kharagpur have invented an eco-friendly food packaging. This is made from cucumber peels, and might soon replace plastic. The light at the end of the plastic tunnel is green! Read on to know more.
Cucumber Peels Might Replace Plastic In Food Packaging
A team of researchers at IIT Kharagpur invented an eco-friendly food packaging made from cucumber peels. The researchers reveal that cucumber peels have more cellulose content than other peels. Using these peels, researchers can develop cellulose nanocrystals. And in turn, make eco-friendly food packaging that’s both biodegradable and has low oxygen permeability.
Jayeeta Mitra, Assistant Professor, IIT Kharagpur informed to News18 “While single-use plastic is consciously being avoided by consumers, they still remain largely in circulation as food packaging items. Natural biopolymers are unable to make their way in this industry as they lack strength, elongation, barrier property, optical property, and in some cases even biological safety. In India, cucumber finds wide use in salads, pickles, cooked vegetables or (is even) consumed raw and also in the beverage industry, leading to a large volume of peel biowaste which is rich in cellulose content.”
IIT Kharagpur Researchers Invent Eco-Friendly Cucumber Peel Food Packaging
Mitra revealed that nanocellulose materials in cucumber peels shall pose as a strong, renewable and economic material of the future. Sai Prasanna, a research scholar there further stated to News18, “This non-toxic, biodegradable and biocompatible product has no adverse effects on health and environment and hence could have a huge market potential by rendering management of organic waste with high cellulose content profitable. ” Well, we salute the researchers at IIT Kharagpur for this much-needed invention. Indeed, the need of the hours is to build a plastic-free world and have a zero-waste approach in our lifestyle. Dive into a zero-waste world at Bangalore’s Eat Raja juice bar.