Your Risk of Cutting Into an Overripe Avocado Just Went Way Down

Costco is now selling avocados that stay ripe twice as long.



Some avocado wholes and halves.

Photo by: eugenef ©eugenef

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The dangers of prepping and eating avocados can extend beyond an empty wallet or the dread “avocado hand.” There’s also the awful feeling you get when you somehow manage to miss the window for a ripe avocado you’ve shelled out good money for and have to toss it in the trash instead of into your salad or bowl of ingredients for guacamole. Oh, the agony! How can a fruit go from totally unripe to woefully overripe so darn fast? And can anything be done about it?

Now, actually, something can. A California company called Apeel Sciences, which aims to combat food waste, has created a plant-derived product that keeps moisture in the fruit and oxygen out, doubling the lifespan of avocados. The longer-lasting avocados are now available, sold under the Del Rey Avocado Company label (featuring the Apeel logo) – $5 for a bag of five -- at Costco.

“Apeel adds a little extra ‘peel’ to the surface of fresh produce that naturally reinforces the plant's own peel and slows the rate of water loss and oxidation — the primary causes of spoilage,” according to the Apeel Sciences website.

According to the company, produce treated with Apeel -- which is colorless, odorless, tasteless, and comprised of lipids and glycerolipids (fats) naturally found in the peels, seeds and pulp of fruits and vegetables -- remains fresh two or three times longer than it otherwise would. So an avocado that, untreated, will stay ripe on your counter for three or four days will last about six to 10 days or more when treated with Apeel. (Note, though, that it also takes longer to reach its ripened state.)

Apparently avocados with a long ripe shelf life are just the start. Apeel may be used to prolong the life of dozens of other fruits and vegetables – from berries to bunches of leafy greens -- and can be used on both conventional and certified organic produce.

Avocados seemed like a natural first step, Apeel CEO James Rogers told BuzzFeed News, because "people have a more visceral reaction to throwing away an avocado than lettuce."

All too true.

Photo: iStock

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