You can see the food spoilage issue from two different perspectives (1) through the perspective of consumers and (2) through a food business perspective. Both are important and interlinked because food is integral to both life and livelihood. Eventually, food consumption and manufacturing, and food processing and the system of fresh food delivery boxes are linked with food spoilage issues.
Food wasting is always seen as utter irresponsibility both for the valueof food and its cost in terms of price. If you want to shop for food items either by going to the market or by ordering food through delivery service, you will eventually wish to keep your food fresh as long as possible.
You will never tolerate damage to your food for two basic reasons, first to eat fresh and tasty food and, secondly, not to visit the market again and again or save money. Similarly, if you own a food processing business, you will never tolerate food spoilage as it directly hampers your business.
Unhealthy foods and improper food delivery are crimes that can result in disasters. According to CDC, one in every six people in the US or 48 million people get sick every year due to wrong food. CDC further reveals that more than 128000 Americans get hospitalized due to foodborne diseases every year, out of which 3000 die.
Therefore, whether you are a conscious consumer or have a food business or a fresh food delivery boxes entrepreneur, you must essentially know how to preserve food or how to extend food expiration periods. Here are a few basic ways of how to prevent food spoilage and how to preserve food.
What are the Factors Responsible for Food Spoilage?
In fact, spoilage is a natural process caused by various factors. You know about food spoilage by its texture, colour, taste, odour, etc. Eventually, food spoilage seriously affects the quality of food and is a threat to food safety. Food spoilage takes place due to the following reasons:
- Several microorganisms, along with yeasts, moulds, bacteria, etc. cause food spoilage and change the smell, appearance, and taste of the food. However, the food spoilage caused by a pathogenic microorganism may not change the colour, smell, and taste but can cause illness. Similarly, natural enzymes cause vegetables and fruits to ripen and change their colour, taste, and texture.
- Interaction of air is another factor of food spoilage. This process is called oxidation, through which the nutrient, flavour, and colour of food change. In addition, light is also responsible for food spoilage. Light can cause oxidation and change the nutrition value and colour of the food. Besides this, pests, insects, parasites, and rodents are a potential threat to food spoilage.
- Temperature or heat is one of the potential factors for food spoilage. By this food gets deteriorated and microorganisms get suitable substances to grow faster with increased temperature. Similarly, time is also considered a major factor because microorganisms and enzymes require time to grow and cause oxidation.
- Food spoilage caused by wrong storing of foods and inappropriate packages is called the physical damage factor of food spoilage. Inappropriate food manufacturing, processing, food package, and transportation and handling lead to various types of food spoilage.
How to Grow the Shelf Life of Food?
There are several ways to increase the shelf life of food and protect your food from food spoilage. Some of the ways are traditional and have been existing for centuries and some depend on technology. Below are some of the popular ways to avoid food spoilage in the contemporary period.
- Freezing and fermenting
- Hot-filling and drying
- Using antioxidants and oxygen absorbers
- Irradiation and pasteurization
- Temperature control
Above all, besides the above ways, appropriate packaging plays a significant role in preventing food spoilage. There are several types of packaging methods such as vacuum packaging, modified atmosphere packaging, gas permeability packaging, barrier packaging, etc. are some of the popular forms of packaging popularly practiced in the market. Eventually, the basic idea behind protecting food from various types of food spoilage is to promote food safety for consumers. Besides this, properly growing the shelf life of food can also generate profit for the people in the food manufacturing, processing, and distribution industry and grow their business.