Garden freshness preserved
The best kind of contemporary innovations is those which are highly workable and address global issues. One such global issue which requires immediate attention and solution is food waste.
Over 1.3 billion tonnes of food waste, occurring at the stages of production, processing, retail, and consumption, is generated per year. Aiming to reduce food waste considerably, Zhafri Zainuddin introduced the post-harvest sticker technology, StixFresh, in 2017. The stickers, costing just $0.40/piece, they specifically created to increase the shelf-life of fruits.
How does Stixfresh work?
A blend of calcium chloride, bee wax, and certain other compounds can hinder the activity of hydrolytic enzymes responsible for the loss in the firmness of fruits, and thus, their use can increase the shelf-life of fruits. Zainuddin used this patent-pending (Patent number: WO2019108241) blend to innovate the stickers.
These coin-sized stickers, when adhered to the fruits, can increase the shelf-life by up to 14 days. StixFresh stickers being 100% natural are safe and don’t alter the nutritional value of fruits. They can preserve citrus fruits, pears, dragon fruits, avocado, kiwi, mangoes, and apples. They can remove the sticker just before consuming it.
A crowdfunded Malaysian project
The Malaysian establishment StixFresh is currently operating in Senawang, Negeri Sembilan, and exports to U.S.A., India, and Indonesia. The company is certified safe by SIRIM (Standard and Industrial Research Institute of Malaysia) and the US Foods and Drug Administration.
They invested $25K in the initial product development and they crowdfund through Indiegogo, and to date has garnered over $21K. In March 2019, they set a lab up by StixFresh in Flanders, Belgium to conduct studies to characterize and optimize the StixFresh formulation.
The stickers are economic, and one can use them at every stage, from production to consumption. It is a revolutionary innovation and can benefit the agricultural industry immensely. Soon StixFresh will come out with a formulation that can preserve vegetables and dairy products.
Malaysian inventor Zhafri Zainuddin primarily developed the idea behind StixFresh. The partnership to introduce the product worldwide began after Buquari Othman and Zainuddin had a chance encounter through an industry symposium in U.A.E. StixFresh won the best food tech/agri-tech startup award in the ASEAN Rice Bowl Startup Awards 2018.