Newly developed edible organic coating solution increases the shelf life of fruits and vegetables, keeping them fresh and flavorful.

A Santa Barbara-based startup called Apeel Sciences says it has invented edible coatings that can extend a fruit or vegetable’s shelf life by as much as five times.

The company borrowed a leaf from nature to devise its solution. Apeel is a powder made from cutin, a substance that plants evolved to make some 700 million years ago in order to survive on land.

It is estimated that food for around a trillion dollar is wasted globally each year, partly because it has gone bad. According to Apeel, which already sells its products in over 200 U.S. stores, it has been found that traders had to throw 50 percent fewer avocados than they did before using Apeel’s products.

Among the investors in Apeel are Microsoft’s founder Bill Gates and the well-known venture capital company Andreessen Horowitz.