According to the UN, approximately one-third of all food produced goes to waste before it even reaches our plates. This shocking statistic highlights the urgent need for innovative solutions that can tackle the issue of food loss. Various startups have emerged to address this problem, with investors and celebrities alike showing support. Companies like Apeel, Shelf Engine, and Misfits Market have all invested in technologies to prevent supply-chain food loss, and now PureSpace has also joined the fight.
PureSpace is a South Korean startup that has developed innovative filtration technology to address the issue of food loss in refrigerated trucks and storage facilities. Their filters efficiently remove ethylene, a gas emitted by ripening produce that accelerates the aging process of nearby fruits and vegetables. With partnerships with major companies like Samsung and Walmart, PureSpace aims to expand its operations into the United States with the help of recent funding.
Targeting Ethylene Gas
PureSpace, a startup based in Busan, South Korea, has developed filtration technology that aims to mitigate food loss in refrigerated trucks and food storage facilities. The focus of their filters is on a gas called ethylene. Bananas, strawberries, avocados, tomatoes, and many other types of produce emit ethylene naturally as they ripen. However, when this plant hormone accumulates in the air, it not only speeds up the aging process of nearby fruits and vegetables but also causes them to spoil prematurely.
Years of Research and Development
Cofounder and CEO of PureSpace, Sunyoung Lee, explained that the company’s chemists dedicated four years to extensive trial and error to develop a catalyst that efficiently decomposes ethylene into carbon dioxide (CO2) and water. By doing so, PureSpace effectively prevents premature spoilage of produce. They claim that their filters are “50 times stronger than previous technologies” and can remove 99.5% of ethylene in refrigerated trucks within just over two hours.
Impressive Partnerships and Expansion Plans
PureSpace is already making significant strides in the industry. The startup has operated as a subscription-based business in South Korea and conducted successful trials with industry giants such as Samsung, Walmart, and leading South Korean grocery stores. Their efforts have not gone unnoticed, as the company recently raised $4 million in a Series A round of funding. This capital injection will undoubtedly contribute to their expansion into the United States, where they plan to secure a $10 million Series B later this year.