IIT Roorkee develops millet-based edible cup

The IIT Roorkee team of three - Bhushan Meshram, Prachi Jain, and Kirtiraj Gaikwad - created a cost-effective and biodegradable Kodo millet-based edible cup. The sustainable development significantly reduces the carbon footprint of packaging.

09 Nov 2023 | By Aditya Ghosalkar

Researchers of the IIT Roorkee developed India’s first Kodo millet-based edible cups

Bhushan Meshram, a master’s student in packaging technology and Prachi Jain, Prime Minister’s Research Fellow (PMRF), under the guidance of Kirtiraj Gaikwad, professor at the packaging and paper technology department at IIT Roorkee, developed India’s first Kodo millet-based edible cups; and the project marks promoting sustainable packaging solutions.

Millet, a nutritious and drought-resistant cereal grain, was used to construct the cup. Owing to its richness in essential nutrients, millet makes it an ideal choice for edible packaging, as it can also serve as a complementary food source.

Bhushan Meshram said, “Our goal was to create an eco-friendly, edible packaging solution to reduce plastic waste. The Kodo millet-based cup is not only sustainable but also nutritious. It can be used for packaging a wide range of food and beverages, providing a safe and eco-conscious alternative to traditional materials.”

(l-r): Bhushan Meshram and Prachi Jain of IIT Roorkee with Kodo millet-based edible cup

Prachi Jain emphasised the importance of their project in promoting food sustainability. She believes it has the potential to revolutionise the food packaging industry and enhance the nutritional value of packaged products.

On 18 September 2023, IIT Roorkee appeared in the spotlight regarding its development of water-resistant paper using a plant-based coating. The feat was accomplished by Praveen Kumar Kunam, a master’s student pursuing paper engineering, under the guidance of Kirtiraj Gaikwad.

In conversation with Disha Chakraborty of WhatPackaging?, it emulated that Kirtiraj Gaikwad’s research endeavours are driven by the dual goals of improving food packaging efficiency and sustainability. With the Kodo millet-based edible cup project, it is evident that he is on a spree to address the critical aspects of food packaging.

On the eve of World Food India 2023, which was held on 3-5 November at Pragati Maidan in New Delhi, the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) promoted the Eat Right India initiative that included informing the nutritional benefits of millets.

To discuss the policy roadmap on millets over the next decade, an international convention on millets is being held in Odisha, today and tomorrow. Two hours ago, the official Twitter handle of International Year of Millets 2023, the Government of India disclosed the theme: "Millets – Ancient Grains for Modern Challenges”. The event will feature farmer engagement activities, emerging technologies in the sphere of millets, technical sessions, b2b meetings, food festivals and more.

Bhushan Meshram, Prachi Jain, and Kirtiraj Gaikwad at IIT Roorkee present a significant step forward in reducing plastic waste and promoting eco-conscious packaging. Kodo millet-based edible cup offers a healthier and more sustainable way to package food and beverages.

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