Request for Proposal
Status: RFP is Closed

Sterilization on the Surface of Fruits/Vegetables in Cardboard Boxes

Request Number
Due Date
Dec 4, 2019
Program Manager

Product supply, technology licensing, joint/contract development


Phase 1- Verification of prototype by March 2021
Phase 2- Development of technology by March 2022


Necessary development expense will be covered
(Details to be discussed)


How to  Apply

  • Click "Respond", complete the form to the extent possible, and submit along with other attachment files available. 
  • After creating your account for NineSights, your draft will be automatically saved and you can resume later from "Control Center". Please note you do not submit confidential information at this process.
  • This request for proposals in PDF format is available here


If you have any questions or request, please feel free to contact us at:
    RFP was closed on
    Dec 2019

    RFP Title


    Sterilization on the Surface of Fruits/Vegetables in Cardboard Boxes
    RFP Description

    NineSigma, representing a global machinery manufacturer (“Client”), seeks technology for sterilizing/controlling fungi and bacteria on the surface of fruits and vegetables contained in cardboard boxes in containers. We widely welcome proposals as long as your technology is principally applicable to plant foods even without any track record of its application to them at present


    Key Success Criteria


    • Types of plant foods: fruits, vegetables, etc.
    • Storage condition: fruits and vegetables are contained in cardboard boxes in containers (see the following image)
      • Materials of containers: copper, aluminum, stainless steel, and resin components are used
      • Size of container: approx. 2.4 m × 2.9 m × 12 m
      • Storage temperature: −5°C to +30°C
    • Fungi/bacteria observed on the fruits and vegetables:
      • Fungi: penicillium, anthracnose fungi, etc.
      • Bacteria: salmonella, Escherichia coli, etc.

    Image: Storage condition of fruits and vegetables


    Technological requirements

    The Client seeks sterilizing or controlling fungi and bacteria on the surface of fruits and vegetables, especially anthracnose fungi observed on bananas, contained in cardboard boxes without corroding containers:

    • No influence on the taste/appearance of fruits and vegetables
    • Capable of improving the quality of fruits and vegetables by sterilization/bacteriostasis (desirable to have test data obtained by the pure culture techniques)
      • As to bananas, capable of maintaining the quality at 13°C for ≥40 days
    • Technology capable of sterilization/bacteriostasis from outside a cardboard box using a device(s) or system(s) installed inside a container is desirable, but technology using a device or system installed in a cardboard box is also welcome

    The requirements listed above are technologically demanding, and thus it is not considered whether to meet all of these requirements or to have any track record for the application of the proposed technology to fruits and vegetables at present if further development provides potential to verify the technology using a prototype by March 2021.

    Possible Approaches

    Possible Approaches

    The Client expects technological approaches such as the following, but is open to others as long as the aforementioned technological requirements can be met:

    • Physical approach
      • Ultraviolet ray
      • Microwave
      • Radiation
    • Biological approach
      • Bacteriophage
    • Chemical approach
      • Ozone
      • Inert gases (e.g., carbon dioxide, nitrogen)
    Approaches not of Interest

    Approaches Not of Interest

    Proposals being currently at the concept level without any data showing an effect(s) required

    Items to be Submitted


    The Client engages in the development of technology for sterilizing fungi and bacteria on the surfaces of fruits and vegetables without corroding containers for storage/transportation. However, they have not yet identified the technology of which requirements as mentioned above can be met.

    Food sterilization/bacteriostasis technology, on the other hand, has widely been studied/developed, and thus promising technologies for solving the challenges are considered present worldwide. The Client has therefore decided to make this RFP to solve these technological challenges as quickly as possible and put the technology to practical use.


    Notes on Response

    Proposal shall have clear points and should not include confidential information. Supplemental files may be submitted in addition to the proposal.


    Response Evaluation

    The client will evaluate all responses with the following criteria.

    • Overall scientific and technical merit
    • Approach to proof of concept or performance
    • Economic potential of concept
    • Realism of the proposed plan (action items, timeline, roles, deliverables, cost estimation)
    • Potential for proprietary position
    • Respondents’ capability and related experiences


    Anticipated Project Process

    After the submission due date, the client will review all submitted proposals. NineSigma will send the review results to each proposer 6-8 weeks after the due date. The client possibly asks clarifying questions before selecting the most suitable candidates for collaboration. The client will select best candidates through evaluations. During the selection process, the client may execute NDA with selected respondents, seek further information disclosure, and discuss specific development targets or potential opportunities.

    The client will execute necessary agreements with the selected respondents and move to the advanced development phase. Specifics of any collaboration will be determined through consultation with the concerned parties.

    Preferred Collaboration Types
    Area of Interest