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New meat detector could alleviate food waste


Dive Brief:
A new meat detector can determine whether or not meat is spoiled. This can be used to test whether meat at the grocery store or in the refrigerator is safe to consume.

The portable, affordable sensor is comprised of chemically-modified carbon nanotubes that can detect whether meat is emitting gases that arise from rotten meat.

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology chemists who developed the device used four types of meat — pork, chicken, cod, and salmon — to test the product. They have filed for a patent, after which they hope to develop the device for consumer use


Dive Insight:
The chemists say that the detector can be even more accurate in determining food safety than the expiration date on the meat's packaging.

This could be crucial in alleviating food waste at the consumer level, which is an estimated 21% of the U.S. food supply each year.

The chemists join the USDA in this initiative, as the USDA also recently released FoodKeeper, a food storage app that helps consumers figure out how long they can store foods. It also provides tips for better storage methods and better handling of about 500 different foods.


Recommended Reading

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Massachusetts Institute of Technology: MIT sensor detects spoiled meat