AgCenter researcher studies use for pecan shells in Poland


BATON ROUGE, La. (LSU AgCenter) – Developing a way to protect pecans and to keep them safe for consumption is the goal of an LSU student who just returned from Poland.

Karuna Kharel, a doctoral student in the School of Nutrition and Food Science, spent one month this summer at the Warsaw University of Life Sciences to study the antimicrobial and antibacterial activity of pullulan film with extracts from pecan shells.

Kharel, a native of Nepal, has been looking for uses for the waste material. She was able to combine her efforts with a group at the university in Poland that was working with pullulan film, which is a water-soluble polysaccharide produced by fungi that have antimicrobial and antibacterial properties.

“The work that I did there will be part of my dissertation, and I will complete the work back here,” she said.

There is no significant pecan production in Poland, but the work being done there was complementary of the work she’s doing.

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