Mikoks from Nanomik Biotechnology protects crops from fungi by controlling the release of plant defense molecules found in nature.

Benefits

  • Reduced food waste
  • Reduced chemical use

Applications

  • Agriculture
  • Food and beverage industry

UN Sustainable Development Goals Addressed

  • Goal 2: Zero Hunger

  • Goal 3: Good Health & Wellbeing

  • Goal 12: Responsible Production & Consumption

The Challenge

Every year, 25% of the fruits and vegetables produced are lost or wasted because of fungal spoilage. In order to prevent this loss, different synthetic fungicides are used. However, these can cause serious harm to both human and environmental health. Additionally, fungi develop resistance to these fungicides, making them ineffective over time.

Innovation Details

Nanomik Biotechnology is inspired by the defensive system of plants in nature, which use anti-fungal compounds to naturally deter fungi. Nanomik has encapsulated these compounds to create a liquid fungicide that can be applied to crops in the field as well as after harvest. When a fungus starts to grow on the surface of a fruit or vegetable, it makes the pH of the plant surface more acidic. This causes the capsule containing the anti-fungal compounds to break open, killing the fungus.

Video

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Watch how Nanomik Biotechnology was inspired by nature to make a more natural fungicide.

Ray of Hope Prize

The Ray of Hope Prize® celebrates nature-inspired solutions addressing the world’s biggest environmental and sustainability challenges. Created in honor of Ray C. Anderson, founder of Interface, Inc. and a business and sustainability leader, the $100,000 Ray of Hope Prize helps startups cross a critical threshold in becoming viable businesses by amplifying their stories and providing them with equity-free funding. The prize shines a light on the innovative, nature-inspired solutions that we need to build a sustainable and resilient world. Nanomik Biotechnology was selected as a finalist for the 2020 Ray of Hope Prize.