What are the Reasons for Food Processing?

Food and Beverages | Monday, April 25, 2022

Before being consumed, almost every food is prepared in some form. The major reasons for processing food commercially are to remove microorganisms and to improve shelf life.

Fremont, CA: Any procedure for converting fresh foods into food items is referred to as food processing. This can include a variety of ways such as washing, cutting, pasteurizing, freezing, fermenting, packaging, cooking, and many others. Adding ingredients to food, for example, to extend its shelf life is also part of the food processing process.

Here are some of the reasons why food is processed:

Makes food edible

Wheat and corn are examples of grain crops that are not edible in their natural state. Milling and grinding procedures turn them into flour, which can then be used to make bread, cereals, pasta, and other edible grain-based goods. Depending on the level of processing, there are three types of flour; whenever possible, choose whole grain.

Enhances nutritional quality

Food processing can influence the nutritional quality of foods in two ways: it can improve it by introducing components that were previously unavailable, such as vitamin D, or it can reduce it by lowering fat, salt, or sugar. It can also lead to the loss of some fiber, vitamins, and minerals as a result of excessive refining, heating, or freezing.

Convenience

Processing and packaging technologies help to meet modern-day time restrictions by delivering a variety of quick-to-prepare foods such as ready meals, packaged salads, and sliced and canned fruits and vegetables that may be consumed on the go.

Price

Food processing has the potential to reduce food costs. Frozen vegetables, for example, offer a similar nutritional value to fresh vegetables but cost less because they've already been cooked, don't contain inedible bits, can be purchased non-quantity, and last longer. In this approach, food processing extends the shelf life of the product and reduces waste, lowering the overall cost of food production.

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