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Clay

Not only in India, worldwide, utensils were always clay-based. Including those vessels where food was stored. From fruits to grains, from perishable food to staple food.

Soil play critical role, even leisure activities and certain medical procedures. We have discussed here how Akhada is more beneficial compare to closed door gym (Gym vs Akhada : Microbes role)

Here is the interesting development!


Research


Clay-based antimicrobial packaging keeps food fresh

https://www.acs.org/content/acs/en/pressroom/newsreleases/2017/august/clay-based-antimicrobial-packaging-keeps-food-fresh.html

“Food packaging that is capable of interacting with food can contribute to safety and prevent economic losses from spoilage,” Hayriye Ünal, Ph.D., says. “Specialized films that can preserve a wide array of foods are highly sought after.”

People around the world have been trying to preserve fruits, vegetables and meats since ancient times. From the traditional methods of salting or fermenting to the more modern methods of canning, freezing or wrapping in plastic films, food preservation has always been important. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, about 30 to 40 percent of the food that farmers produce in the country goes to waste. Sometimes, busy people just don’t have enough time to eat all of the fresh food they buy, but other times food spoils at the grocery store because consumers avoid purchasing imperfect fruits, vegetables and meats.

Bacterial contamination and permeability to both oxygen and water vapor are major issues that scientists are addressing. Another challenge is to prevent too much ethylene from building up around foods. Ethylene is a compound naturally released by fruits and vegetables that aids in the ripening process. But an excess of ethylene trapped underneath the packaging film can cause food to over ripen and rot.

To meet the demand for multi-functional packaging, Ünal’s team started with a polyethylene film. To scavenge for ethylene and provide a gas barrier the group incorporated clay “halloysite nanotubes,” which are small, hollow cylinders. The nanotubes prevent oxygen from entering the film, and prevent water vapor and other gases from escaping. In addition they keep ethylene from building up by absorbing it. The researchers loaded these nanotubes with a natural antibacterial essential oil found in thyme and oregano called carvacrol and coated the inner surface of the packaging film with the loaded nanotubes to kill microbes.

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