Eating on the go has become a part and parcel of our daily schedule. Amidst our busy lives, we prefer those food items or preparations that can be eaten while shuttling from place to place. Wraps, rolls, burritos et cetera are some of the options that are complete meals by themselves and can be had even without a proper dining table setup. One of the major drawbacks of eating wraps, however, is that the fillings often drop out of them the moment we take a bite. A group of engineering students from John Hopkins University has invented a simple solution to this problem – an edible tape.
A team of chemical and biomolecular engineering students at the John Hopkins University has made this edible ‘Tastee Tape’ to provide relief from this universal issue. The tape can be used to seal the wrap or burrito and avoid fillings from falling out as you take a bite. The small piece of tape is also completely safe for consumption as per the team. According to their official website, it is basically, “an edible adhesive comprising a food-grade fibrous scaffold and an organic adhesive.”
They had tested a wide range of ingredients to create a combination that would suit the purpose of being safe for eating and yet have some adhesive strength. “First, we learned about the science around the tape and different adhesives, and then we worked to find edible counterparts,” said Tyler Guarino, who worked with fellow students Marie Eric, Rachel Nie, and Erin Walsh on the project.
How do you use edible tape on an everyday basis? The team says they have prototyped strips measuring half an inch by two inches, that come fixed on a sheet of waxed paper. You need to simply remove a strip from the sheet, add some water to it and affix it to your wrap or Burrito of choice.
While the tape is clear in color, the team added blue dye to illustrate its use. They are applying for a patent and thus could not reveal the ingredients used in the making of the edible tape. “What I can say is that all its ingredients are safe to consume, are food grade, and are a common food and dietary additives,” said Guarino.