It can be tricky to "go gluten-free," especially when you're out and about.
Enter Nima, the portable gluten-detection device made by San Francisco-based 6SensorLabs, which was founded two years ago by MIT alums Shireen Yates and Scott Sundvor. The company has raised $4 million in September 2014, and is on its way to start selling Nima to the public later this month.
Nima's built-in sensor will detect if the food contains at least 20 parts per million of the gluten protein.Compared to similar devices, Nima is faster, taking just two minutes to tell the user whether the food they're about to eat is gluten free or not. The built-in sensor will detect if the food contains at least 20 parts per million of the gluten protein, which is in adherence with the FDA's rule for gluten-free foods.
The device includes a disposable, one-time use capsule where the user should place the food. Then, he/she should just push the button to get the "answer" from Nima. If the food does contain gluten, a little blue sad face will pop up on the display; or if it's gluten-free – a happy face will appear.
A Nima starter kit that includes the sensor and three one-time use capsules will be up for pre-order for $179 starting Oct. 20. After the first five days, the price will increase to $199 until pre-orders are exhausted. During the pre-order time, 12 packs of those disposable capsules will be priced at $47.95. Later on, the device will retail for $249.
Ultimately, 6SensorLabs is looking to make food choice as transparent as possible. "It's food transparency beyond this first protein we are looking at, helping anyone who wants to know what's in their food and how to best nourish themselves," Yates said.