Edible tape invented to keep your burrito from falling apart
By Hafsa Khalil
Four American engineering students were brainstorming the perfect invention for their product design class, when inspiration from lunch – literally – hit them.
“Erin was eating a burrito and the tortilla split open on her,” Tyler Guarino, one of the four, told CNN. “It hit her then – it’s a problem we can solve.”
Guarino, Erin Walsh, Marie Eric and Rachel Nie were seniors at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore when they embarked on their mission to create an edible ribbon that could hold wraps and burritos together last year.
Today, they are proud of their prototype product, called “Tastee Tape”.
Guarino said the team spent months studying “normal tape” and the elements that make it up – a spine that holds its structure together and an adhesive that makes it stick to surfaces – to try to find their “counterparts.” edible”.
They had three main criteria for their ribbon: it had to be clear and colorless, tasteless and without noticeable texture. After testing various combinations, they found the magic recipe, which is also gluten-free and suitable for vegans.
“We tested about 50 different formulations” before finding the winning “Tastee Tape” recipe, says Guarino.
The exact ingredients are a closely guarded secret due to a pending patent application, but the team says everything used is “edible, food safe, GRAS [generally recognized as safe]and are common food ingredients or additives.
There are three simple steps to using Tastee Tape, explains Guarino. The first is to peel off a strip from its sheet of waxed paper. Then wet it to activate the strip, before finally applying it to your tightly wrapped tortilla with pressure.
The team’s current prototype consists of strips of tape on waxed paper, but they also hope to wrap it on a roll like regular office tape.
The team graduated from college on Monday with Guarino expressing how “really exciting” Tastee Tape’s journey to date has been.
“We learned a lot about product design, prototyping and patenting. We are all very grateful to have had this opportunity before graduating because it taught us so many valuable skills,” he said, adding that he and teammate Marie Eric will be staying another year at JHU. to complete a master’s degree, and in this time will continue to work on the product.
Top image: Tastee Tape dyed blue for added visibility. The actual band is colorless. Credit: Tyler Guarino
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