MIT, Harvard Battle To Make It Easier To Pour Ketchup
Is there any problem an engineer won’t try to solve? Based on this story, it would appear the answer is no:
It’s the world’s biggest non-problemic problem: getting the last bit of ketchup out of the jar. Ketchup is so viscous, and it seems so eager to stick to glass and plastic. But leave it to students at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to solve the greatest non-issues of our generation: A team of engineers have designed the perfect condiment bottle — one that ketchup simply cannot stick to
The secret is in a futuristic substance known as “LiquiGlide,” a non-toxic, FDA-approved coating that can be applied to the interior of bottles. According to MIT PhD candidate Dave Smith, it’s “kind of a structured liquid — it’s rigid like a solid, but it’s lubricated like a liquid.” Regardless of what the bottle is constructed of, liquid or plastic, ketchup will flow out of it nearly effortlessly.
It seems like ketchup sticking to the inside of bottles is a more compelling problem than many realize — a rival team at nearby Harvard University have been working on similar, plant-derived, ketchup bottle technology. And the idea of a friction-less ketchup bottle caught enough people’s imaginations to win the audience choice award at the MIT $100K Entrepreneurship Competition.
Ending bottle friction is a noble goal. Any technology to get ketchup out of bottles easier could make a serious dent in helping reduce food waste in a $33 billion condiment industry. Smith explains that the new bottles “could save one million tons of food from being thrown out every year.”
Here’s video of the MIT project in action:
Guys, there’s a simpler solution, it’s called gravity.
Ketchup Being Poured image via Shutterstock