Unravelling the Complexities of Food Science

Food science is a complex field of study that delves into the physical, biological, and chemical composition of foods, the causes of food spoilage, and the concepts that underlie food processing. It is a broad field of science that encompasses biochemistry, chemistry, nutrition, microbiology, and even engineering. In essence, food science studies the general composition of foods and how they interact with each other when processed or preserved. To understand food science better, it is important to have a basic knowledge of nutrition concepts such as carbohydrates, fats, proteins and water.

These regulatory evaluations are essential in ensuring that novel foods and food ingredients are safe for human consumption. Additionally, food science also looks into the sustainability of new foods in the transition phase to the circular economy; the trade of “algae suitable for human consumption” in the European Union; and the challenge of minimizing food loss and waste. In recent decades, scientists have developed novel strategies to reduce food loss and waste, improve food production and find new ingredients, design and build new food structures, and introduce digitalization into the food system. Ireland is a small island nation that has made a name for itself in terms of its reputation for quality products and globally recognized brands in the food sector.

The main American organization in the field of food science and technology is the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT), based in Chicago, Illinois. This organization is also a member of the International Union of Food Science and Technology (IUFOst). Food science has been used to address problems faced by the food supply chain in order to ensure the availability of food for everyone. From wine to sauerkraut, from tofu to yogurt, this old but very modern method has been used to add science to the art of preserving food.

As demand for recipes and specific foods such as those low in fat, carbohydrates and sugar grows, so does the food science industry. The subdiscipline of food product design refers to curing food products from a technological perspective using innovative process methodologies and structured engineering to translate consumer desires into product properties. Food safety regulations are not only an effective way to control the quality and safety of food production but they can also be effective tools for monitoring the flow of resources from raw materials to the final consumer. Food scientists also create new food products and develop new, more efficient ways to process and package them.

Once you've finished a degree in food science, you'll take the first steps toward finding the career that's right for you. Food science remains a relatively new and growing discipline created primarily in response to social changes taking place in North America and other parts of the developed world. The basis of this discipline lies in understanding the chemistry of components such as proteins, carbohydrates, fats and water as well as their reactions during processing and storage.

Sally Koepke
Sally Koepke

Certified web trailblazer. General twitteraholic. Friendly beer advocate. Friendly zombie expert. Extreme social media enthusiast.

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