May 09 2014

Food Product Innovation

This is another of the many manuals by FAO. This one discusses product development, although in a someone theoretical way.

click the image to visit the web page

The manual is broad, covering the following topics:

There is a lot of good information in here although for my liking its a bit theoretical and maybe it could do with some more interesting case studies.

It is, however, worth downloading and reading. It is 35 pages and was published in 2006 so is up to date and comprehensive.

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Oct 03 2013

Do Germans Spend 20 Times More Than Chadians on Food?

Hungry Planet, a recent book by Peter Menzel and Faith D’Aluisio, presents the food consumption of households around the world. The results are presented in the form of a picture of the family and the food they ate in a week, just like this German family.

click the image to visit the website

In each case the total cost of the food is given (in this case $500) as well as demographics of the country and some information on favorite foods. Besides just being interesting and revealing eg this German Family drinks 4 bottles of wine in the week while the French family appears to drink only one, it gives a view of food culture an food processing.

Revealing and concerning is the difference between first and third world countries and in particular, Central African countries. The family from Chad spends only $2,50 on food, just a 20th of the German Family!

click the image to visit the website

This is quite startling, although the environmental impact is probably even more interesting given the almost complete lack of processed food, besides post harvest processing, and one way packaging in the food of the Chadian family. While the German family shows that in a week they used around sixty glass, plastic and board beverage containers.

Not much scope for a Food Processor in Chad!

The answer to the question in the title is that we can’t tell from these single images. However, we can be sure that the general differences highlighted are an indication of the food culture differences. We also know from the research on waste, that a significant fraction of the food (maybe a quarter) shown in the German home is probably wasted, while very little of that reaching the Chadian household is.

 

 

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Jun 04 2013

Pulsed Electric Field Processing – Free Factsheet

This is clear, concise and brief information on all aspects of the technology.

click the image to visit the website

 

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Apr 09 2013

Gentle Drying of Fruit and Vegetable Purees in a BIRS Spray Dryer.

Here is another story looking at product development focussing on premium products which avoid heat treatment in processing.

The BRIS process uses ambient temperature air which has been dried using heating and silica gel to a few percent relative humidity, in a counter current drying tower.

click the image to visit the website

This application by Naturex, a French company more focussed on natural ingredients for the food & beverage, nutrition and health and personal Care industries, is a first for them. The products main selling point appears to be their good organoleptic properties and their ease and quality of reconstitution.

 

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Feb 20 2013

Colourants in Food

This article in Food Navigator

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which covered a range of interesting issues in food colouring including the relation between depth of colour and the perception of sweetness, the real danger of some colourants of 100 years ago, the move to natural colours and the fact that colours often need to compensate for the effect of processing on a foods colour also linked to am15 page article in Critical Reviews with a more comprehensive view and a focus on history and regulation.

click image to visit the site

So take some time to get up to date on food coloring with this free online information.

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Nov 19 2012

Unilever

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

click the image to visit the website

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.

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Jun 18 2012

This Food Blog Viewed 60 Million Times

I would be really happy if mine was! So why not try and help me along with lots of viewing and passing along of the URL www.digivu.co.za.

click the image to visit the website

 

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May 19 2012

Troubleshooting Food Processing – Free Online Information

Here is some more advice from Wayne Morley of Leatherhead, based on many years of experience.

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Feb 24 2012

How Do You Process Food In The Open Air?

I’ve recently come across images and videos of processing outside and started wondering how this is controlled and how the products of such processing are accepted by countries with strict import quality standards. Here’s an example of a chili drying operation in West Africa.

DryingChilisWestAfrica

My first INTERNET search was not that productive. Do any of you have links or contacts I could follow up on to try and get an understanding which I would publish here.

First things that come to mind are:

  • Rooibos had a major quality problem some years back, that the story goes was caused by birds flying over their drying area
  • All that high cost, nutritious, organic, sun dried fruit is dried in the open
  • Indoor processors often wear gloves, overalls, hats and even masks while outdoors the food is exposed to whatever is there
  • Not even the term used is very clear some Chinese processors talk of Garden Factories, engineers use open processing and open air processing also applies to food markets.
  • So how do these fit together and what else is processed in the open? I would be interested to hear from any of you who have information to offer.

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    Feb 01 2012

    FAO Reports on Food Losses

    Some years ago Food Processors worried about rural grain losses in the “development sector” and the high cost of effluent BODs in the Industrial sector. This was where waste was important to them and where it focussed action.

     

    Now the FAO has commissioned a study “Global Food Losses and Food Waste” that brings a totally different view and confirms an understanding that has been developing over the years as food shortages and global warming become worries to the world.

     

     click the image to download the report

     

    The overall conclusion is that roughly one-third of food produced for human consumption is lost or wasted globally, which amounts to about 1.3 billion tons per year. The report then goes on into the detail of what losses are and how they are measured. It presents many graphs which a focus on illustrating where in the world and where in the vfood alue chain these losses occur – this is of course vital if anything is going to be done about it.

    ,

     click the image to download the report

    The report discusses the causes and prevention of losses with a series of practical experiences.It concludes by identifying the limited data on which the report had to be based, especially as globalization and food logistics change. It finally, points out the different needs in the developing and developed countries and provides a large listing of references and additional reading.

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