Ethylene gas, given off by ripening produce, is a plant hormone is necessary for ripening, but too much of it can spoil an entire produce area in as little as 50 parts per billion (ppb).
Titanium dioxide photocatalyst can break down ethylene into the harmless byproducts of carbon dioxide and water vapor. Since the ethylene is eliminated, rather than filtered or collected, the device requires virtually no maintenance. Photocatalyst oxidation property can also reduce bacteria, molds and odors from storage rooms. Controlling ethylene in storage rooms and displays can increase the shelf life of perishable items by more than a week. With prices of fresh produce and flowers increasing, retailers and consumers are more concerned about reducing spoilage.