Smart Sensors May Be Able to Tell You When Food is Spoiled

Nowadays, if you want to make sure your food hasn’t spoiled, you are limited to some very unscientific options. You can check the date, look at it, and/or smell it. None of these methods are completely reliable, leaving it possible for you to become sick from eating bad food. Cosmetics have an expiration date, too, and using them after they have “gone off” can cause skin irritation and eye infections. Or they could make you susceptible to skin cancer or sunburn if they contain a sunscreen on which you’re relying for sun protection.

The days of not knowing whether food or cosmetics have become spoiled may soon be over.  Researchers at Clarkson University of New York have invented an inexpensive, portable, paper sensor that can detect contamination and spoilage in both food and cosmetic products. The easy-to-use sensor can also identify new medicinal plants and tell you whether or not the wine or tea you’re drinking is authentic.

The paper changes color when it comes into contact with spoiled food or cosmetics. The more the color changes, the more severe the level of spoilage or contamination. The process works by reacting to certain specific bacteria. For example, one of the contaminants it currently reacts with is ochratoxin A, which is a fungal toxin found in products like cereal and coffee. Scientists hope its use could be expanded even further and that the sensors will be able to identify salmonella and E. coli in the future. These two contaminants are responsible for thousands of severe cases of food poisoning every year.

Not only can these sensors tell you when food has gone bad, they also, by default, let you know when food is still okay to eat. Thousands of pounds of food are thrown away each year because people rely heavily on expiration dates to tell them when food is no longer safe to eat. Often, food that is past its printed date is still perfectly safe to eat if it has been stored correctly. This is because those labels are more reliable for telling consumers when food might not taste as good. They are meant to be used as “best by” dates rather than “must use by” dates.

These sensors are currently still in the testing stages, but their developers hope to have them in the hands of consumers as soon as possible.

Next Article
  • The Wise Seemingly Mad People Of Gotham

    Throughout history, not many people have been very fond of taxes being raised or new taxes appearing. And that is even true as far back as 1200 when the small sleepy medieval town of Gotham played an incredible rouse all to get out of paying taxes. Gotham a small town...

    Read More
  • As Flashy As A Sea Sapphire

    Growing up any kid would like to be able to control color on demand. Explode into different shades of light and cause your very own firework show. There is actually a creature that is able to flash up brightly and then completely disappear, on the fly. These ant size creatures live in subtropical or warm...

    Read More
  • Camels Disqualified From Beauty Contest Due To Botox Use

    It sounds like such a mad thing to do, to inject a camel with botox. But in the money mad world of Saudi Arabia’s Camel Festival anything is possible. Plastic surgery is now a big problem that organizers of King Adbulaziz’s Camel Festival are having to deal with. This festival...

    Read More
  • The Rapist Hunting Warrior Woman

    The Hundred Year War between France and England was the birthplace of many legends and tales of revenge. Years of turmoil and battles created the perfect outlet for warriors to become legends. Or they became the perfect place for you to seek your vengeance: to hunt your demons. That is what Marguerite de Bressieux did,...

    Read More
  • Swarm Robots Ready For Mass Production

    If you have had ever had nightmares about robots taking over the world, then maybe you should close this article right now. The Zebro swarm robot is an insect hive mind-like robot which is pretty much ready to be mass produced. Why are we potentially causing a Terminator plot like scenario? ...

    Read More
  • When Ants Go To War They Bring The Medics

    A species of aggressive Viking-like raiding ants actually save their wounded and then stitch them up. Yes, it appears they have dedicated doctor and nurse ants ready to save the wounded. And the incredible thing is researchers have determined that this strange behavior actually gives the injured ant a 90%...

    Read More
  • Secret Painting Found Behind A Picasso Masterpiece

    A new scanning technique put together by art researchers in the US continues to undercover amazing art secrets. The newest discovery has been found beneath a Pablo Picasso’s masterpiece: The Crouching Woman or “La Misereuse Accroupie” as called in French. Scanning systems for art pieces have existed for some time...

    Read More
  • The Man Who Fought WWII For 30 Years

    The mission was to stay out of sight and collect information about the Allied troop movements. The Location was the island of Lubang in the Philippines. Lieutenant Hiroo Onoda from the Japanese Imperial Army was tasked with a Rambo-like top secret mission: him and his four man team against the world. At least that is...

    Read More