Muhammad Rahman, scientist, developed a protein-based nanocomposite coating for fruit and vegetables. This coating helps improve accessibility to fresh produce of food in desert areas with poor access to healthy and affordable foods. He gained an award from the National Science Foundation and was tasked to produce a sustainable, low-cost, egg-based coating that can extend the shelf life of fruits and vegetables.
Rice University stated that this initiative was launched to address food preservation as well as waste management challenges. The coating can be applied to variously shaped fruits and vegetables, reducing spoilage, dehydration and microbial growth rates. Rahman sees the progression of this study from a lab to a pilot-scale project that he thinks will be a game changer.
A broader goal of this project includes improving the food industry, its sustainability and the reduction of carbon footprint. Rahman strives in aligning his research with the critical and historical challenges that confront us to ultimately address anthropogenic climate change and make real-world solutions for a more sustainable future.