A new SEC filing revealed today that NanoICE— a Seattle-area startup using molecular ice to chill and preserve meat, seafood and other raw materials as they are transported or stored— has secured a $500,000 investement (in the form of convertible debt financing). According to its website, the company’s customers include fishing vessels and food retailers today.
The systems sold by NanoICE produce molecular ice fractions, or ice crystals that are less than one micrometer in diameter. The “nanoice” can be delivered through something as small as a hypodermic needle, or in large quantities through hoses and pipes. NanoICE aims to curb food waste and end hunger, especially in the U.S., while displacing more energy-intensive refrigeration technology.
According to reports by the United Nations Environment Programme GRID-Ardenal (UNEP G-A), in the U.S. 30% of all food, worth some $48.3 billion, is thrown away each year, which means about half of the water used to produce this food is wasted. (Agriculture is the largest human use of water.) Food retailers lose about 26% of the food they store and try to sell.
Earlier this year, NanoICE won the Zino Zenith Award for Best Investment Opportunity from entrepreneurs and angel investors in the Pacific Northwest.
The company is also testing its technology in a medical context, while selling it within food industries; it may be successful in preserving human organs allowing them more time to travel from organ donors to transplant patients. Executives could not be reached immediately for comment.