USPTO grants patent to Unistraw flavoring straws
The US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has issued a key patent to Unistraw Holdings’ ingredient delivery technology - The Unistraw Delivery System (UDS).
The UDS consists of three parts - a transparent plastic straw; patented filters inserted and welded into both ends of the straw housing; and hundreds of small pellets, called UniBeads contained inside the straw housing.
When the consumer sips through the straw, the liquid passes through the filters to dissolve the UniBeads inside, delivering active ingredients contained within them throughout the drinking process.
The technology can be used to deliver not only flavorings, but nutritional and therapeutic compositions such as probiotics and medications.
Unistraw CEO Suchet Rastogi said: "We see the opportunity to own the 'better-for-you kids' beverage market, particularly with fun, take-anywhere milk beverages that promote both mental and physical health."
Designed in Australia in 1996 by Peter Baron, the first patent application was made in 1997 and patents were granted in Australia, the US and six other countries in 2001.
Unistraws are currently available in 30 countries around the world. The product is slated for launch in the US in the first quarter of 2013.