Inspirational appetizers on unusual startups, emerging trends and bleeding-edge research

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Tag: Food

Mature combination

Making egg and meat substitutes means having the right ingredients in the right combination. Which is why an Israeli firm’s latest platform uses artificial intelligence to determine how natural plants can be interbred to create new food products. Taking into account food producers' requests concerning nutritional value, texture and taste, along with cultivation circumstances, the system combs a database...

Healthy home

In hospitals a good night’s sleep is key to recovery. In order to keep bees healthy meanwhile, a US startup has developed a smart home for up to 24 colonies. The solar-powered apiary is equipped with a camera, sensor technology and a robot arm. It controls the climate inside, monitors and removes pests without chemicals and provides food. Predictive...

Full indulgence

Mobile mushroom farms help save on delivery channels and packaging. Now, to reduce the millions of disposable cups used daily, a startup from Melbourne has developed a tasty alternative to conventional takeaway tea and coffee. Their edible cups are reminiscent of ice-cream cones. They are made from local oats, grain and rye plus coconut oil, sugar and salt. Once...

Combined impact

A breakfast omelette made from sweet lupins? That’s possible. Now, a German research team is upping the ante with a sustainable palm oil substitute, which could also be used to produce vegan cheese. The main ingredient is corn stove, mixed with a single-celled fungal strain. Fermenting the combination produces an oil which is almost identical in composition to palm...

Accelerating addition

Waste heat from houses or hot water pipes can be converted into electricity. Fermenting food waste is already used to produce hydrogen. Now, an American research team has accelerated the process by adding yeast. Their patented method can produce hydrogen as a clean fuel source within 18-24 hours instead of the usual several days, while also eliminating the risk...

Sensitive liberation

Skin cancer can be detected early by cell phone. Now a Sri Lankan startup is protecting coconut trees by detecting red palm weevil when it attacks. The parasite is responsible for the destruction of 10% of coconut trees globally as well as 30% of some other 40 types of palm species. Highly sensitive, acoustic sensors are placed inside the...

Talking heads

Protein from spider’s silk enhances prosthetic flexibility, while algae protein helps blind people see. Now, using biotechnology, a Californian startup is giving plants the power of speech. Equipped with a special protein, plants can communicate fungal- and insect infestation or water and nutrient deficiencies by emitting different coloured light signals. All visible from tractors, drones, or even satellites. A...

Mobile growth

A portable turbine powers cell phones. Front yards feed communities. And now a Canadian startup is using containers (assuming they aren’t already hotels) to cultivate mushrooms. 14 different strains are available, including exotic varieties such as oyster, lion’s mane or shiitake mushrooms. Straight from the container to the kitchen, minus the delivery routes and exhaust fumes. In future, local...

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