By AURI

By AURI Editor’s note: As a service to our readers, we provide news about the work of others in ag utilization. Often, research done elsewhere complements AURI’s work.

New Shoe Made From Cotton and Corn

A shoe is no longer just a shoe, it’s a value-added agricultural product. Reebok launched their first plant based athletic shoe, the “NPC U.K. Cotton + Corn”. The shoe has a sole made from a corn-based rubber substitute, a top made from 100 percent organic cotton, and an insole made from castor bean oil. No dyes were used, and the packaging is 100 percent recyclable. Most shoes sit in landfills for hundred of years, but these shoes are made from materials that can be replenished. Generally, the footwear industry creates almost every shoe using petroleum oil to make synthetic rubber. Petroleum can be harmful to the environment and is not sustainable. This shoe is 75 percent USDA certified bio-based content. In the future, Reebok hopes to go even further and create a shoe that is biodegradable and would decompose within 6 months.

August 16, 2018 EcoWatch

Super Slippery Packaging Aims to Cut Down on Food Waste

Virginia Tech researchers are finding new ways to cut down on food waste and consumer frustration. Consumers understand the frustration of trying to squeeze out every drop of ketchup from those small plastic packets. Food left behind in plastic packaging contributes to a huge amount of food waste. Researchers found that they could reduce food waste by using super slippery industrial packaging. The study establishes a method for wicking chemically compatible vegetable oils into the surfaces of common extruded plastics. Researchers used natural oils like cottonseed oil on the plastic surfaces. This technique allows sticky foods to release from their packaging. This process can be used on plastics like polyethylene and polypropylene. Potential applications go way beyond ketchup packets and could include other condiments, dairy products, beverages, and some meat products trapped in their packaging.

August 3, 2018 Science Daily