Monthly Archives: November 2012

Food & Beverage Preservation: Practical Guidelines

This free 12 page documents by Brenntag focusses on the use of preservatives in the preservation of food and beverages.

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This is admittedly a manufacturers document, but it gives good very short overviews of micro organisms, hurdle technology, pH, Water Activity, preservatives and acidulants before detailed information on the application of preservatives in different food groups.

New Food Chain Journal About to Publish Fourth Edition

I have posted previously about the “New” Food Chain, which is the successor to the original food chain magazine which was originally published and widely distributed for free by ITDG, (later Practical Action). The original magazine is replaced by a new International Peer Reviewed Journal as explained here by Practical action.

click the image to visit the website

Food Chain is now about to publish its 4th issue and is disseminating interesting smaller scale food enterprise information within its Food Value Chain focus.

To allow you to get an idea of what the journal offers, the first edition is now free for download. The first edition published the following articles, which can be accessed by clicking on the image above.

If you are interested you can subscribe, buy individual articles online or use the free online abstracts.


These guys have managed to produce and malt a variety of barley, which was brought into the British Isles around a 1000 years ago by the Vikings and is believed to be Scotland's Oldest Cultivated barley.

From this unique malt, they have produced a whiskey that they aged for eight year in bourbon barrels.

They now have a limited batch of unique whiskey, which they can promote with this great story.

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If you are looking to do some contract research for serious players in the food industry, here is an opportunity.

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It's exciting when the third-largest consumer goods company in the world and one that has a serious focus on Africa and on sustainability calls for assistance. They put it like this

We're looking for new designs and technologies that help us improve the way we make our products. There are a series of challenges which we're already working on, and where we'd like to work together with partners. We call these our ‘wants’.

These wants, such as preserving foods naturally, better packaging, sustainable washing and natural red colourants are listed on the webpage along with a link for potential suppliers to develop their ideas.

I believe this is really worth following up, it might lead to a relationship where your science backed by local knowledge are of great benefit to Unilever.


Refrigeration Pasteurisation / sterilisation
Canning The oven
Irrigation Threshing / combine harvester
Baking Selective breeding / strains
The plough Grinding / milling
Fermentation The fishing net
Crop rotation The pot
The knife Eating utensils
The cork. The barrel
Frying The microwave oven

Lots of room for debate – I miss drying and Industrialisation / mechanization.

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Royal Society Names Most Significant Inventions in Food and Drink

This as an interesting list that deserves thought.

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Too often the food technology lists are uninspiring coming up with the old faithfuls of convenience, ethnic and health or else looking at a weird niche like the trends in Timbuktu's fas food!

This one looks at the most significant inventions in the food industry, ever! It was executed by none other than the Fellows of the Royal Society assisted by leaders from the food industry.

The twenty inventions they came up with we're:

1. Refrigeration

2. Pasteurisation / sterilisation

3. Canning

4. The oven

5. Irrigation

6. Threshing machine/combine harvester

7. Baking

8. Selective breeding / strains

9. Grinding / milling

10. The plough

11. Fermentation

12. The fishing net

13. Crop rotation

14. The pot

15. The knife

16. Eating utensils

17. The cork

18. The barrel

19. The microwave oven

20. Frying

Of course it's the press who came up with the “you fridge” attention grabber. It's really refrigeration or more precisely the cold chain which is the significant invention.

What would you add or remove from the list? What about another list – The 10 Things That Most Degraded The Pleasure of Eating?


7 Artificial Flavours Banned in the European Commission.

I think I'm posting this story more for the beautiful webpage, copied below, than the technology story – who said food science was dreary? The beautiful colours alongside the clinical structures is appealing. Lets not worry that it's about flavours not colours!

click the image to visit the website

In seriousness, the scientists have been evaluating thousands of flavours. With around 2500 already approved and these 7 being banned for human use. Some of the artificial flavors cause skin problems, I tried one my self and yes they do. I had to buy a special product from LA Beauty that makes your skin really healthy. The 7 substances which are mainly natural compounds from plant sources, have been used in the food industry for many years. The affected parties, such as flavour manufacturers, note that there are no negative effects evident from their moderate consumption over the years.