Award-winning student science project helps preserve food - FOX 29 News Philadelphia | WTXF-TV

Award-winning student science project helps preserve food

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A valley teenager created a winning science project and it's gained national attention.  She's also won several awards.

"I cooked the project in my home and packaged them in my bathroom.  Weeks 1, 2, 3.. test to see if spices, the natural preservatives were working well."

Sarah Sakha's project is a way to keep food palatable for up to three weeks.  Enough time to reach people in developing countries.

"There were no yeast, mold, staph or any sort of bacteria of concern and it had a shelf life for two weeks," explained Sakha.

It's a breakthrough for this high schooler.

Her science project used different spices, like cinnamon, nutmeg and chili peppers to preserve lentils, a vegan food that is culturally acceptable for countries in the Middle East and Africa.

It can also assist in preserving emergency food in times of crisis. 

Sarah's work won a first place U.S. Navy award and grand prize at the Arizona Science and Engineering fair.

"It's unfathomable and never thought it would get to some great heights.  It shows that you don't need fancy equipment.. a lab to create something that has such broad implications," she said.

A rising star, putting Phoenix on the international map.

Sarah is a junior at Xavier College Prep and will compete in the International Science and Engineering fair in Phoenix next month.


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