Almost all food is processed in some way before it is eaten. Even fresh vegetables from the garden are first cleaned and trimmed. To start with, processing made foods more edible, palatable and safe, and preserved it for rainy days. Nowadays, food is processed at home – think of all that happens in our kitchens, and on an industrial scale – think of all that occurs before we open and unpack our groceries.
Mass food processing, scientific and technological know-how, and progress in storage and transportation, have allowed for greater food choices and a more varied diet, increasing the population’s likeliness to get all the nutrients required for good health. Never in human history have we had such high-quality and safe food so abundant, cheap, and readily available. With a lot of the convenience foods being energy dense, their easy accessibility may be seen as a mixed blessing for public health in today’s societies.
In this article, we cover what we mean when we talk about food processing and processed foods, explore both the positive and negative effects of processing food, and give some tips on choosing processed foods within a healthy and sustainable diet.
What is the impact of food processing and how can we get the most out of processed foods? Learn more about the basics of food processing from our infographic.
Contaminants in vegetable oils and fats (and foods containing them such as cookies, pastries and others) pose a potential health concern to average consumers for young age groups...
Process contaminants are chemical substances that have not been intentionally added to food but are produced during cooking, heating or purification of foods or ingredients.
European consumers expect nutritious, safe, environmentally sustainable, and affordable food products. This article gives an overview of food processing, its evolution, consumer trends, and how the food...
Increasing regulatory and consumer demands have intensified the pressure on the food industry to implement reliable methods of food inspection to ensure product safety and quality.
Food fortification can be used to increase the micronutrient content of foods or to replace nutrients lost in food processing, thus playing a valuable role in preventing dietary deficiencies.
Consumer confidence in food safety is basic to the food processing industry and essential to its success.