Keeps Produce Fresh

A Fruitful Investment

No one likes wasting fruits and vegetables, yet the average family of four throws away as much as $600 worth of spoiled produce each year, according to the USDA (it’s not all that hard to imagine when an organic apple can cost $1.50). We’ve discovered an easy way to preserve the edible life of your produce, so you have more time to consume it instead of composting it. With this simple little product called BluApple, you can extend the storage life of produce by as much as threefold.

BluApple works by absorbing ethylene gas, which is given off naturally by fruits and vegetables. If ethylene gas builds up in your food storage area, it speeds the ripening process and accelerates decomposition. Entrepreneur Timmy Chou, who founded BluApple, was inspired by the science applied for years to prevent spoilage in industrial environments like ocean liners, trucks and warehouses. He created a consumer product that makes use of the same non-toxic active ingredient (sodium permanganate). Each BluApple can absorb ethylene gas in a typical home refrigerator, produce bin or storage container for about three months (after that, refill packets are available). Simply place a BluApple where you keep your fruits and vegetables, and then sit back and enjoy them. . . for much longer.
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BluApple - prolongs produce freshness

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Grommet Launch Conversation

  • Timmy

    Spoiling - it's not good for kids, movie endings or your produce. I can't help you with the first two, but I'm happy to make available to consumers a technique used by the industry to prolong the life of your produce. My name is Timmy and I'm the founder of BluApple. I'm here today to answer any questions you may have about BluApple and about keeping your fruits and vegetables from ripening too quickly.

  • Leslie
    3/31/2010 12:21 PM

    This is a neat idea for a product. I'm wondering whether I need to take my fruits and vegetables out of their "plastic baggies" in the produce drawer in order for this to work.

    Thanks for the info!

  • Timmy
    Timmy – Special Guest
    3/31/2010 12:48 PM

    Hi Leslie, You do not need to take your produce out of the bag but make sure you leave the plastic bag open. The better the airflo the better the Bluapple works.

  • Katherine
    Katherine – Grommet Team
    3/31/2010 12:51 PM

    I agree with Jen - strawberries are the biggest disappointment when you have to throw them out and it happens too often!

  • Kim
    3/31/2010 1:10 PM

    How long does one packet in the blue apple last?

  • Katherine
    Katherine – Grommet Team
    3/31/2010 1:20 PM

    @Kim - One packet can absorb ethylene gas in a typical home refrigerator, produce bin or storage container for about three months.

  • Timmy
    3/31/2010 1:48 PM

    Hi Kim,

    Katherine is right, the Bluapple will last about three months. However, we have somewhat over-engineered the capacity to make sure that even people who have a lot of produce are protected.

    Actually there is a very easy way to check to see how the product is working. You may notice that the active ingredient in the video is purple in color. As ethylene gas is absorbed it is oxidized and slowly the color changes to brown when the carrying capacity is reached. Light users of produce can enjoy protection for quite a long time. The product does not "wear out", but will continue to work until it is full.

    Hope you like saving money!


  • Desmond
    3/31/2010 2:54 PM

    Timmy, I'm attempting to figure out how many of these to buy. I have two crisper drawers in the fridge, so I'm presuming that I need one apple in each. Correct? And in the pantry, I have a basket (8" by 12") with potatoes and right beside it a basket for onions. Do I need one in each of these? Thanks.

  • Timmy
    Timmy – Special Guest
    3/31/2010 3:16 PM

    Hi DJP,

    Ideally one Bluapple in each drawer is best, and one in the dry storage area. If you have only minimal produce stored in the fridge, one Bluapple will be sufficient. Again, you can monitor the potency of the product so as long as you have refills, you will be set!


  • Jill
    3/31/2010 4:34 PM

    Hi Timmy,

    I believe fruit flies are attracted to ethylene gas. Would love to know whether the blue apple prevents these guys from being attracted to fruit bowls?

  • Timmy
    3/31/2010 4:56 PM

    Hi Jill,

    Not sure on the precise pheromone or chemical that attracts fruit flies, but if ethylene gas is the culprit, use of the Bluapple will reduce the effect. Amazingly, some fruits and vegetables (like berries or kiwis, for example) are sensitive to ethylene levels as low as 5 PPB (parts per BILLION). Therefore, performance is best when the storage space can be entirely contained and scrubbed clean, but we often hear from people getting great results on the countertop with bananas and other display items. Incidentally, the Bluapple is also very good for preservation of flowers and greenery and this technology is heavily used by commercial florists and shippers. Please let me know if you can document a real difference with the fruit flies!


  • Judy
    8/21/2010 12:42 AM

    Hi! I purchased a starter set of Bluapple. My question, how can I buy just the refill packets? My Whole Foods, where I originally purchased it,doesn't seem to carry refills. By the way, it worked very well for me in my vegetable and my fruit drawer. Thanks!

  • Katherine
    Katherine – Grommet Team
    8/22/2010 12:58 AM

    @Judy - We're glad to hear that this product worked well for you! You can purchase a 12 month BluApple refill kit by clicking on the drop down arrow right above the 'buy now' button and selecting it.

  • Katherine
    Katherine – Grommet Team
    2/24/2011 1:11 PM

    This is the second time we are featuring BluApple and have carried over the conversation for today's feature. If you've already tried BluApple let us know what you think. If you have any questions let us know that, too.

  • denise
    2/24/2011 1:46 PM

    Thanks for featuring this product. I think I have seen this recently in my local grocery store and I was a skeptic. It's good to get the background and real user information. We puchase mostly organic produce and waste is always a concern. Any waste reduction will be welcome!

  • Katherine
    Katherine – Grommet Team
    2/24/2011 1:53 PM

    @denise: It's hard to get the full story from a box on a shelf! We're glad we could give you more information and introduce you to the person behind the product.

  • florence
    2/24/2011 2:06 PM

    What type of chemicals are used in this product? I don't want to use something that might be toxic.

  • Katherine
    Katherine – Grommet Team
    2/24/2011 2:25 PM

    @florence: The active ingredient is Sodium Permanganate (NaMnO4). The product is organic, non toxic & recyclable

  • Timmy
    Timmy – Special Guest
    2/24/2011 3:44 PM

    Hi, let me chime in! There are several ways that may be used to remove ethylene gas from produce storage areas., but the simplest and safest method is to oxidize it with sodium permanganate. Sodium permanganate (NaMnO4) is used in a number of familiar applications, such as in drinking water and air treatment and filtration systems. It is non-toxic and safe.

    The carrier medium we use for sodium permanganate is a natural zeolite. Zeolite is a pure form of volcanic mineral that has a very high crystalline surface area, providing an ideal substrate for the absorption and oxidation of ethylene gas.

  •  Jim Anderson
    Jim Anderson
    9/7/2012 4:54 PM

    @Katherine Klinger "The product is organic, non toxic & recyclable"

    You are obviously not a chemist and should not be commenting on this type of question.

    1- Sodium Permanganate is an INORGANIC chemical.

    2- In the mono hydrate version it is a very nasty material.

    3- I don't know what form is used in the product but I am fairly sure it should be kept out of the reach of children.

    4- I would imagine Timmy has investigated this carefully and can provide more information.

  • Katherine
    Katherine – Grommet Team
    9/7/2012 5:12 PM

    @ Jim Anderson - You are absolutely right! That's why we think it is so important to connect the creators with their customers so that they can answer the important questions they have before making a purchase. I wouldn't have responded to that question without Timmy's behind the scenes help. It's not in my area of expertise! He also stopped back to provide further clarification. He's a true gem who really cares about his product.

  • lynn
    2/24/2011 2:31 PM

    Hello where and how do you get these things if you want them an what does it cost...There are no prices or where you can purchase them

  • Katherine
    Katherine – Grommet Team
    2/24/2011 3:09 PM

    @lynn: You can purchase them directly from us. On the product's main feature page where you watch the video there is a shopping box to the right of the video. You will see a dropdown for you to choose the option you wish to purchase and you will be able to see the price of each option.

  • Joy Kaczmarek
    Joy Kaczmarek
    2/24/2011 2:58 PM

    I don't think it is inorganic -- sodium permanganate :

  • Katherine
    Katherine – Grommet Team
    2/24/2011 3:10 PM

    @Joy Kaczmarek: I will let Timmy clarify.

  • Timmy
    Timmy – Special Guest
    2/24/2011 3:50 PM

    @Joy Kaczmarek: You are correct that NAKMNO4 is not a naturally occurring compound, however it is broken down in natural ways and into natural harmless components. The actual mechanism is very similar to the rusting of iron, where iron is oxidized into iron oxide (rust) and CO2. In our product ethylene gas is oxidized into magnesium oxide and CO2. In fact once the product has fully absorbed ethylene gas the magnesium is a useful fertilizer agent and we recommend that you put the spent product in your houseplants as a soil conditioner! Our website, has a downloadable white paper that describes the complete chemical reaction if you are interested!

  • Joy Kaczmarek
    Joy Kaczmarek
    2/25/2011 9:28 AM

    @Timmy Chou: Thanks. I will check it out.

  • Katherine
    Katherine – Grommet Team
    2/25/2011 9:45 AM

    @Joy and anyone interested in reading more about the BluApple, here is a link that will open up the BluApple white paper pdf that Timmy mentioned.

  •  Jim
    9/7/2012 4:59 PM

    @Joy Kaczmarek

    Here is the first sentence in Wikipedia: "Sodium permanganate is the inorganic compound with the formula NaMnO4"

  • Elizabeth Varner
    Elizabeth Varner
    2/24/2011 3:07 PM

    Does this mean you leave them in the bags or take them out of the bags? If you take them out, won't this spread the scent from fruit to fruit - like apples smelling and tasting like bananas, etc.?

  • Katherine
    Katherine – Grommet Team
    2/24/2011 3:27 PM

    @Elizabeth Varner: You put the BluApple right in your produce drawer or fruit bowl. It would not cause anything to smell like something else.

  • Timmy
    Timmy – Special Guest
    2/24/2011 3:55 PM

    @Elizabeth Varner: Remember that the product does not "emit" any gases or smells. It is only a passive "vacuum" to neutralize ethylene gas. Remember that some fruits are sensitive to ethylene gas concentrations as low as .02 PPM!!

  • Timmy
    Timmy – Special Guest
    2/24/2011 5:15 PM

    @Timmy Chou: Remember that there are three components to successfully extending produce life to its maximum: ethylene gas removal; temperature; and humidity. All must be managed to maximize the useful life.

    Our recommendation in the refrigerator is to allow your produce to remain in its plastic bags. Most of these bags are polyethylene and will be somewhat permeable to ethylene, however to maintain an ideal humidity we recommend that you poke a few dozen holes in the bag with a toothpick or fork -- which will also improve the ethylene gas concentrations as well.

    For dry storage these suggestions apply as well, with the additional requirement that the coolest possible location be used for storage.

  • jed gould
    jed gould
    3/10/2011 7:54 PM

    I have experience with thebluapple and I use it in the two produce drawers of my fridge, replacing it every 90 days. I have noticed some things that may be of use:

    1. You don't need to buy the actual plastic blue apple to place the packets in a bowl or refrigerator. Just the replacement packets. Yet the packets are not the most effective when crowded by veggies, lying flat, or smothered by a plastic bag. So if you can place them so the ethylene gas can flow around them completely you can save yourself having to buy both the plastic apples and the replacement kit.

    2. I have proven to my satisfaction that extended exposure to this oxidizer can taint the taste of large Fuji apples. But we are talking months here. I never would have had the chance to bite into this apple had it not been preserved by the packets in the first place. I do not know if this goes for other produce. I guess I deserve what I get if I am waiting two months to eat an apple. But it was a very strange taste.

  • joanne
    joanne – Grommet Team
    3/10/2011 10:16 PM

    @jed gould: -- helpful tips and insights, thanks for sharing.

  • Timmy
    Timmy – Special Guest
    4/9/2011 5:43 PM

    @jed gould: You are correct -- the Bluapple itself is merely a container for the packet of ethylene absorber. It does serve the purpose of: a) protecting the packet from excessive moisture; b)assuring airflow, as you suggest, and; c) it is really cute, don't you think?

    As to your comments about taste effects. This is a very puzzling observation. The active ingredient does not give off any gas or chemical. It is completely inert just like baking soda would be in your refrigerator. It's only function is as a ethylene gas molecule "flypaper". It sucks the molecules in and they are converted to CO2 and manganese oxide (essentially it is like iron and oxygen, the Bluapple material "rusts").

    Note that apple growers and shippers all routinely use this technology in transport and storage so I can guarantee that your Fuji apples would have spent many months in the presence of an identical ethylene oxidizer at the time of purchase. I would be interested if you have any other info that leads you to the conclusion that the taste effects were from the Bluapple, Please advise!

  • steve
    4/9/2011 12:25 PM

    is the blue plastic apple BPA free?

  • Katherine
    Katherine – Grommet Team
    4/9/2011 2:35 PM

    @steve: I have sent Timmy a note and will let you know.

  • Timmy
    Timmy – Special Guest
    4/9/2011 5:25 PM

    @steve: Thanks for your question. The Bluapple is made of food-grade polystyrene and does not contain BPA.

  • judy ogrady
    judy ogrady
    4/10/2011 7:10 PM

    do I open the container before I put it in the blue apple or just put it in

  • Katherine
    Katherine – Grommet Team
    4/10/2011 11:34 PM

    @judy ogrady: You do not need to open it, you can set the whole ethylene packet within the BluApple.

  • Mary
    5/19/2011 11:33 AM

    There are no instructions with the product. If you do not need to open the white packet, what good is placing it into the blue apple?

  • Katherine
    Katherine – Grommet Team
    5/19/2011 11:44 PM

    @Mary: Great question. This is from Timmy:

    Well it certainly is the case that the necessary element of efficacy is the packet. We have heard of folks merely buying the refill kit. However, the Bluapple itself does some important things. First, it allows for airflow all around the packet and prevents produce from piling on top of the packet and smothering it. Second, it protects the packet from condensation or moisture in the refrigerator. If the packet were to get completely wet the efficacy would be significantly degraded. Third, it's cute. It continually reminds you when you look in the refrigerator that produce management is an ongoing, necessary activity if you want to maximize your fresh food investment.

  • Vilma
    7/21/2011 12:13 PM

    What about strawberries, blueberries, etc. I don't usually keep those loose in the refrigerator drawer...I usually either keep them in the original packaging or put them into one of my own containers so they don't get bruised. Will the Bluapple work on berries that are in containers or bags?

  • Katherine
    Katherine – Grommet Team
    7/21/2011 12:34 PM

    @Vilma Martinez-Azoy: As long as the fruit isn't completely enclosed and still has airflow between the fruit and the Bluapple, the Bluapple will be effective.

  • Vilma
    7/21/2011 2:34 PM

    @Katherine Klinger: Thank you Katherine....I guess I'm going to order it. I certainly hope it works because I eat alot of salads and produce, but no matter how much I eat it seems I can't eat it fast enough and consequently I end up throwing alot of it out....that can get really expensive. I've tried other "produce saver" methods, but they haven't worked. I hope I have better luck with the Bluapple!

  • Katherine
    Katherine – Grommet Team
    7/21/2011 3:16 PM

    @Vilma: I think you will be happy with your decision. If for any reason you are not, please contact us.

  • robert mahon
    robert mahon
    8/9/2011 7:24 AM

    can i buy items on your sit i live in IRELAND

  • Katherine
    Katherine – Grommet Team
    8/9/2011 11:25 AM

    @robert mahon: Unfortunately, we do not currently ship to your beautiful country.

  • Debbie Bragg
    Debbie Bragg
    8/20/2011 12:14 PM

    I have looked EVERYWHERE in our local stores for the is Apple. I live in VA. Is it sold here in stores?

  • Katherine
    Katherine – Grommet Team
    8/20/2011 5:33 PM

    @Debbie Bragg: You could go to a locally managed grocery store and request that they stock them. In the meantime you can purchase them here.

  • Kate
    2/3/2012 5:31 PM

    I use the BluApple product. They work great! I use them in a bowl on my counter top and they definitely extend the life of fruits and vegetables. And, yes, the BluApple is cute!

    * - post was edited to comply with our no outside advertising policy.

  • Chew-Hoong
    Chew-Hoong – Grommet Team
    2/4/2012 8:49 PM

    @Kate: We're glad you're enjoying fresher produce with the help of BluApple. Thanks for stopping back to share your experience. I have the BluApple too; it's very satisfying to have my fruits & veges kept fresh longer. I find the bright blue color very helpful to make sure they're strategically placed when I have lots of stuff in my fridge bins.

  •  Debbie
    9/13/2012 4:06 PM

    My BluApple kit was delivered with dead and alive ants....outside and inside the packaging. Anyone else have that problem after delivery??

  • Chew-Hoong
    Chew-Hoong – Grommet Team
    9/14/2012 6:38 PM

    @ Debbie: The BluApple Team wants to assure you that the package did not leave their facility in that condition. Sounds like it might have been stored in a place that attracts ants on the way from the post office to you. They're just as concerned. A new package is on the way to you.

    I've personally received packages twice from BluApple with no ants or "worms" ;0) in the apples. We're sorry it happened to you.

  •  Sandra Byrd
    Sandra Byrd
    10/17/2012 6:05 PM

    I received my Blue Apple package today. On the 1year refill kit it states you can receive alerts when it's time to change your packet. When I enter your email address it directs me to the Daily Grommet??

The launch day conversation has ended. Please direct further questions about this Grommet to our Community Experience Team.