Science Questions

Sun, 20th Nov 2005

Part of the show Genetics, DNA Extraction and the Human Genome Project

Question

Euan in New Zealand asked:

Why is it that cream crackers left out take a matter of a few hours to go soggy and stale, yet when put into a large box containing the same amount of air as outside, they remain crisp for weeks?

Answer

When you put crackers into a tin, the amount of air, and thus water in the air, is limited. Thus, even though they'll soak up some water, they don't have access to a whole room's worth of water, and so the amount of water available to make them soft and stale is minimal.

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