This New Nima Device Can Detect Trace Amounts of Peanuts in Food

Nima / Nima

For the millions of people with peanut allergies, eating food prepared outside their own kitchens can feel like navigating a minefield. School cafeterias and restaurant kitchens often contain the allergen, and with small amounts of it capable of triggering large reactions, it’s sometimes impossible to tell if food is safe to eat before it’s too late. A new device from the company Nima is designed to give people with these allergies peace of mind when eating out.

As TechCrunch reports, the Nima Peanut Sensor can detect peanuts in food to 20 parts per million at 99 percent accuracy. To use it, owners rip off a morsel of their meal and drop it into a single-use test capsule. Once they’ve inserted the tube into the device, the sensor will analyze the chemical makeup and report any allergens it detects within minutes. A smiley face means it’s safe to eat, while a “peanut found” alert accompanied by a peanut icon indicates there’s trace amounts of the ingredient the user can’t see.

Nima has already made a name for itself in the allergen-testing industry. They’re known for their gluten-detecting device which uses similar technology to the peanut sensor and is designed for people with celiac disease and their families. Along with launching the peanut tester, the company will also release an updated version of its original gluten tester.

The price may be a deal-breaker for some families: Both items normally retail for $289, and the test capsules required to use them cost $72 for a pack of 12. That means using the sensor every time you go out to eat gets expensive fast. But for certain occasions when food needs to be double-checked, Nima could be a real life-saver. You can purchase the Nima Peanut Sensor for a discounted price of $229 if you pre-order it before March 8, 2018.

[h/t TechCrunch]