When we hear edible, then something which we can eat comes to our mind. Usually, we mean something which we can eat and digest is edible. But here, there is another term cutlery attached to it. Now we wonder how a cutlery can be edible? How can we eat a cutlery? How will it feel like eating the spoon along with the dish? Well, we may think that there must be any hidden technology behind it. Maybe it is an innovation of a food technologist – Cutlery that we can eat(Edible Cutlery)
ORIGIN OF BAKEYS INDIA
But putting an end to all our queries a researcher of ICRISAT, Narayana Peesapaty came up with this innovation. He set up Bakeys India in 2011 in Hyderabad. He holds BSC (Hons) in Chemistry from Osmania University and MBA from IIFM- Bhopal. Later he worked as Senior Scientific Officer at International Water Management Institute (IWMI). He is the Founder and Managing Director of Bakey’s Foods Private Limited. He believes that change is the nature of the world. And we should be the instruments of change before the change overtakes us.
Usually, we never think of the wastes we are making as a consequence of our daily life. We directly throw it away to our surrounding and most of them are non-degradable. Let us talk about very common things like cutleries. Mostly we use and throw the cutleries made of plastics say spoons, forks, chopsticks.Have we ever thought how they impact the environment we live in? So in search of the solution to these problems we need to think beyond the horizons. When we start thinking out of the box, there comes innovation and that’s what the great minds do.
By keeping in mind the negative effects of plastic on the environment and its impact on our lives, Narayana Peesapaty came up with the idea of Edible cutlery. In order to give a complete meaning to edible, it should be eatable and nutritious. It should be eco-friendly and should not have any adverse effect on our body.
Their mission is to bring about a revolution in cutlery. Currently, about 40 BILLION plastic utensils are used just within the United States within a year. Worldwide, this becomes a figure at 16 times this magnitude. We use many of disposable plastic utensils all over the world. We may think of using reusable cutleries instead of these. But in many cases by doing so may lead to infections and may cause health hazards. For example in fast food shops what if the vendor uses the same cutlery for every customer? For a solution to it, we may go for corn made degradable utensils. But these do not degrade easily and remain for land for times.
If we consider the energy consumption in developing the product then we find a remarkable difference. The energy requirement for the production of 1 plastic utensil is equivalent to the energy requirement to produce 100 edible spoons. If we compare with corn base utensil then the number becomes 50.
So it’s time to go for cutleries which come from those biodegradable materials which can be either eaten or can be disposed of.
HOW TO MAKE – Edible Cutlery
These are made from most commonly used cereals such as rice, sorghum, wheat flour. Just add hot water to them and bake them at high temperature. As a result, we get a crunchy and strong edible cutlery. In addition to it, high temperature also helps in reducing the moisture content so that the shelf life of the product becomes of about 2 years. To make it sweeter add sugar to it. In order to make it more appealing, they use rock salt, black pepper, carom seeds and cumin seed.
These spoons are also available in different flavors like ginger-garlic, mint-ginger, carrot-beetroot and so on. It holds good as a nutritious product as they don’t use anything that may cause harm to health. There is no preservatives and colorants. The product is free from artificial chemicals and trans fats and contains nothing of animal origin. It is a purely vegan product which adds one more benefit to it as everyone can use it.
Now they are looking to make the product gluten free. Mostly they use millet instead of rice. Rice cultivation in India requires more water when compared with millet cultivation. A research shows that rice requires 60% more water than millet. So when we will go for more and more use of millet than rice then it may contribute to the conservation of water. It is another perspective behind the innovation.
They use semi-automatic machines so that the hygiene can be maintained and the waste will be less. If we will look at the customer demand for the product then from data Bakeys has sold more than 1.5 million units. It is as cheap as plastic as they procure the raw materials directly from the farmers.They have made it so that everyone should have access to it. These products will not melt if kept in hot water which makes sense that we can use it in any type of food.
Bakeys aim at expanding the trend by introducing more and more cutleries such as forks, chop sticks, dessert spoons. They are looking up to reach new heights by introducing cups, plates and many other tablewares.
By looking deep into the idea we will find something which is solely made to save our mother nature by reducing the waste. We can make the surrounding a better place to live in and can ensure our sustainability. Nowadays environment pollution is an emerging discussion and many of the scientists are trying their best to find the solution to it. Use of edible cutlery is an initiative and we can be a part of it. So its time to say no to plastics.