This genetically engineered plant can be your new air purifier that cleans the air as well as 30 regular houseplants.
The high-tech flora, dubbed Neo P1, recently went on sale after roughly four years of researching and testing, according to a report.
Created by the Paris-based start-up Neoplants, the genetically modified greenery promises to build on plants’ natural ability to clean the air — and greatly increase it.
Based on the Ivy-like Pothos plant, the powerful new man-made organism is equivalent to the work put in by 30 plants for air purification purposes, according to Inverse.
Neoplants reportedly wanted to figure out a way to purify air without using electricity for better sustainability.
The new item comes at a time when people across the globe care more about the air they breathe following the height of COVID-19.
“One of the side effects of the pandemic is that people are much more aware of what’s in the air they breathe,” Patrick Torbey, co-founder and chief technical officer of Neoplants, told Inverse.
The new houseplant is supposed to better capture volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that are chemicals found in everyday items like cleaning supplies and building materials in indoor spaces, Inverse said.
Because VOCs are so tiny, they’re hard to remove from indoor air with a mechanical filter while plants do a better job of clearing the air, according to the Inverse, which cited a 1989 NASA study.
Neoplants reportedly said plants need some metabolic tweaking to be more effective.
Neoplants co-founder and CEO Lionel Mora said the company’s first product is the Pothos vine, which is also known as the Devil’s ivy, Inverse reported.
“We started with one of the most popular houseplants in North America,” he told the outlet.
The project took four years of almost-constant work with the undertaking “like trying to build a plane while flying,” Torbey told Inverse.
The start-up said it was able to create a plant that can capture and recycle dangerous indoor air pollutants.
The cost of the customized plant start at $179 and is branded on the company’s website as “a superplant with superpowers.”
Neoplant reportedly complied with FDA standards by ensuring the plant would not do better in the wild than average plants.
“We don’t give a selective advantage to the plant. We don’t make it grow faster, we don’t increase its resistance to pesticides,” Torbey told Inverse. “We’re not touching any of that.”