Calgary area engineer awarded patents for optimizing condiment recovery

CALGARY, Alberta – An area reservoir engineering professional was awarded a number of patents for technologies that he claims, “can be used to increase the recovery factor of a number of household consumer products, namely condiments.”

Mitch Redback, VP of reservoir engineering with Airdrie-based intermediate producer Blackcat Resources, was happy with the new patents, which he had filed for years ago, to protect a number of ideas that he feels he could market through various business ventures. At this morning’s press conference, Mr. Redback told reporters the genesis for many of the ideas.

Dick McWeenar, Msc
Mr. Redback, engineer with Blackcat Resources

Well, I’ve been trying to optimize things since I was a kid, always trying to get the most out of things, and even people. Perhaps that why I’m an engineering manager today – to be able to squeeze the most out of my subordinates. Anyhow, years ago, I decided to document all of my ideas, and then I later ran them past a buddy over some beers, and he encouraged me to patent the ideas and make something of them. So here I am. – Mitch Redback, P.Eng.

According to the prospectus that was made available at the press conference, Mr. Redback was awarded a total of 17 patents for a variety of household consumables. But 2P News summarizes only his most coveted patent, which has been awarded internationally, with the inventor’s personal comments about how it came to be.

Patent #8,74,195 – Optimizing Condiment Recovery Factor with Secondary and Tertiary Recovery Methods. The average person will discard a condiment container (say, ketchup) when there is still a good 10 to 15% of the product within it. Why? Because of its high viscosity and relatively low mobility. So after primary depletion, when the ketchup has been manually squeezed out of its container, my idea is to inject a little bit of water into the bottle (a diluent), swish it around, and then continue to produce the product through a process that I call secondary diluent recovery. This method can result in up to 95% recovery factor. The only cost to this secondary method is that the ketchup could taste a bit watery.

You don’t like watery ketchup? No problem, because in a tertiary recovery method that I invented, instead of adding water, I add an acid of sorts, say, vinegar, because not only will it keep the ketchup flavour from becoming watered down, but the vinegar will change the wettability of the ketchup container thereby reducing the residual ketchup saturation and in turn mobilizing product that would otherwise not be consumed.

I was able to test this method in my at-home lab with results approaching 100% recovery. And the best thing is that these recovery methods can be used not only for ketchup, but also for mustard, mayo, and other condiments, even if they are in containers that are not squeezable.

The prospectus also details a number of other patents that include improving toothpaste recovery factor to upwards of 97%. Another illustrates how he is able to achieve basically 99.9% recovery from shampoo and dish detergent by employing gravity drainage in high vertical permeability containers.

Is Mr. Redback nuts? Or is he the Sir James Dyson of the optimizing-recovery-of-household-items market? Only time will tell, and 2P News will be the first ones to report on any new products from the Airdrie-based inventor.