Food quality and spoilage - chemical issues


The deterioration of food, which limits its shelf life, can often be due to internal chemical changes. Understanding these changes is required before action can be taken to slow them down or prevent them. Campden BRI has wide-ranging expertise in a variety of areas which can help you identify the cause of the problem:

  • Texture – such as the thinning of sauces from starch degradation.
  • Colour – including discoloration of meat, fruit or vegetables.
  • Off-odour and Off-flavour:
  • - Breakdown of proteins in meat.
    - Taint from packaging, environment or processing.
    - Rancidity from lipid oxidation or hydrolysis.

Enzyme analysis can give an indication of adequacy of blanching and heat processing/cooking, and many texture, flavour and colour issues can be caused by specific enzyme activities -amylase, polygalacturonase, lipase, polyphenoloxidase, lipoxygenase, peroxidase, alkaline phosphatase and so on.

Contact us

If you would like further information about our chemical food spoilage services please email us at or call our switchboard on +44(0)1386 842000 and they will be happy to direct your call to the relevant person.