Sunday, June 28, 2015

Israeli Facility To Turn Plastic Waste Into Fuel

Plastic Waste
Environmental Services Company Ltd., an Israeli government company established in 1990 to handle hazardous waste, will soon begin operating a unique facility designed to recycle plastic and turn it into fuel.

According to the company’s assessments, the facility will be able to derive 1,320 pounds of oil-like substance from every ton of plastic waste it treats. This facility will be the first of its kind in Israel.

Every day, Israelis dispose of some 1,500 metric tons of plastic waste. Most of it, 75.7 percent, is buried in landfills. Most of the plastic waste comes from homes, agriculture, and industry. In addition, Environmental Services Company receives about 3,000 metric tons of plastic waste from packaging per year.

The recycling process involves melting and depolymerizing plastic until fuel resembling oil is derived. The end product is an oil substitute that, when refined, can obviate the need to purchase oil.

Source: Jewish Business News

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Superfood That "Checks All the Boxes"

A new plant-protein source is coming to market from Israel, and it is grown using a closed-system technique that ensures purity and the absence of pesticides and contaminants. Tel Aviv-based company Hinoman will unveil the new plant protein, called mankhai, at next month’s Institute of Food Technologists Annual Meeting & Food Expo.

Mankhai is part of the Lemnaceae (duckweed) vegetable family, a wetland plant found floating on water surfaces. Hinoman will produce mankhai using hydroponic technology that uses water, not soil, to grow. This patent-pending process not only eliminates contamination from pesticides and other residues, but it also enables continuous, year-round growing in controlled conditions, with minimal water, arable land, and energy use, the company says.

Since Mankhai does not sprout from seeds, it grows quickly and there is no germination-failure risk. Hinoman’s proprietary, eco-friendly cultivation system utilizes closed-environment, yet economically competitive, advanced hydroponics technology to completely control and optimize the plants’ growth.

The whole-leaf vegetable protein has a superior nutritional profile to superfoods like kale, spinach, and spirulina, including all nine essential amino acids, iron and zinc, fatty acids, and vitamins A, B12, and E. The plant contains over 45% of protein on a dry-weight basis. Plus, the company points out, it has a neutral taste - unlike algae - that facilitates much easier inclusion of mankhai in whole-food supplements or foods like protein shakes, sports nutrition products, and nutrition bars.

The eco-friendly cultivation process can be scaled to industrial levels. The technology can also be used to grow other vegetable ingredients.

Upon being harvested, 100% of the leaf is used, which eliminates waste. Labor costs are also kept to a minimum with the automated state-of-the-art agrotechnology.

The company says mankhai “checks all the boxes” for important attributes:
  • good taste
  • health benefits
  • scalable volume
  • continuity of supply
  • price stability
  • food safety
  • sustainability

It holds the potential of addressing global malnutrition challenges as well as promoting a healthy lifestyle.

Source: Nutritional Outlook magazine

Monday, June 15, 2015

Nuclear-neutered Flies Head to the Balkans

Fruit fly
Millions of sterile flies are leaving Israel to head to battle in the Balkans, taking on the Mediterranean fruit fly, a pest that has been destroying citrus groves in Balkan countries.

Israeli company BioBee from Sde Eliyahu in the Jordan Valley specializes in creating natural and eco-friendly pesticides. BioBee recently won a tender by the International Atomic Energy Agency to supply 400 million sterile bees, following on the heels of a similar successful project the previous year.

The sterile flies will be released over the course of several months on the border of Croatia and Bosnia, where they will push the harmful flies away from the groves, allowing European farmers to finish a successful season.

The fly larvae were raised in BioBee labs and subsequently underwent special sterilization using radioactive technologies.

The IAEA supports the project as part of its plan to encourage use of nuclear technologies for peaceful purposes. The project has been successfully implemented in Israel.

Read more about it here.

Off to enjoy my own chemical-free garden, till next time!