By Tatiana Koutchma, PhD
Novel food technologies are a new trend in food processing. The ability of innovative methods to transform, preserve, and tailor foods with improved functional and nutritional values has created global interest in their development. Foods that are processed in a less-severe manner can be safer, fresher, more natural, and additive-free. Using these innovative approaches, some foods also can be stored for longer periods.
Some of these emerging technologies and technical innovations represent progressive developments that offer competitive advantages. For comparison, traditional food preservation has been associated with four fundamental concepts:
- Apply heat energy to elevate product temperatures. Typical examples include cooking, blanching, pasteurization, and sterilization of food.
- Reduce heat and product temperature to extend shelf life, such as in refrigeration and freezing.
- Remove water from a product’s structure for a longer storage. Drying is a typical processing operation.
- Package food to maintain product attributes during transportation and storage.
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