Things you need to consider when setting a shelf life
By Linda Everis - 25 July 2017
The shelf-life of a product is the time that it remains acceptable to eat. Within the shelf life the product will remain safe and retain the desired sensory, chemical, physical and microbiological characteristics.
Understanding shelf life is essential in assuring the safety and quality of the product. It’s important to re-evaluate shelf life when products are reformulated because changing or reducing levels of salt, sugar or preservatives can all impact on shelf life.
Good hygiene starts with kitchen design
By Emma De-Alwis - 18 July 2017
Hygienic design is essential to ensure that the cleanliness of a kitchen is easy to maintain. The suitability of the design and ease of cleanliness can lead to the reduction of food contamination and food poisoning incidents. When planning and designing a commercial kitchen, hygienic design is often forgotten at the expense of efficiency, functionality and practicality. For example, when designing a kitchen the significance of gaps and sealants can be overlooked. Gaps between the counter and wall are hard to effectively clean and can encourage pests such as insects and rodents. They can also encourage food debris build up and microbial growth. These areas should be sufficiently sealed and the efficacy of these seals reassessed regularly.
Process development of retorted foods – your top three most frequently asked questions
By Sarah McFarland - 30 June 2017
Thousands of new food and drink products are launched in the UK each year. Many of those products will require a company to purchase a retort/autoclave cooker. I have seen many companies – even experienced manufacturers – invest in a retort only to be left feeling in the dark because it’s a completely new area for them.
Arsenic – complying with new limits in food
By David Bellis - 15 May 2017
Arsenic is known to be harmful to health, but not all forms of arsenic are equally toxic – the inorganic form is far more harmful than 'organic arsenic' (arsenic bound in organic molecules). Inorganic arsenic can cause long term health effects. The regulatory limits for arsenic in food therefore focus on inorganic arsenic, and it is important that methods of arsenic analysis distinguish these types if the results are to be meaningful. We have developed a method that does just this.
The top 5 HACCP food audit non-conformances and how to avoid them
By Clare Sant - 2 May 2017
Your HACCP plan is there for a reason. Not complying with it is considered a non-conformance. Even though HACCP plans have been a requirement of the Food Safety Legislation since 2006, over the 30 years I have been auditing I see the same non-conformances cropping up time and time again.
Food colour – it's more important than you think
By Martin Whitworth - 24 April 2017
Colour is one of the most important sensory aspects of food and drink. As well as indicating its likely freshness and flavour, it can also influence consumer choice and enjoyment of a product.
Since the 1980s, there has been a reduction in the use of artificial colours and a move towards clean label ingredients. With an explosion in the number and variety of products on the market and greater consumer demand for clean label ingredients, it has never been more important for formulators to perfect their product’s colour. This is particularly important for products sold in transparent packaging.
Pulsed electric field - the potential in food processing
By Danny Bayliss - 19 April 2017
Pulsed electric field processing is a well known non-thermal food preservation technique, but did you know it can also be used to improve product quality and food production processes?
During PEF processing, short high voltage pulses are applied which induce pores in cell membranes. At low field strengths (<10 kV/cm) pores can be formed in the cells of both liquid and bulk food products.
Developing food for the ageing consumer - six things to consider
By Sarah Chapman - 21 March 2017
It's no secret that the average age of the European population is increasing - the over 60s now account for nearly a quarter of the total population. As we age, our bodies and our nutritional needs change. As a market, ageing consumers remain largely ignored by the food industry, but they offer significant opportunities - they often have a higher disposable income and more time to browse new products while shopping. Companies that understand the opportunities and challenges can ensure that their new and mainstream products remain accessible and relevant to the needs of older consumers.
Protein profiling - how can it improve food safety and traceability?
By Reka Haraszi - 6 March 2017
We've recently started a new three year member-funded project looking at the use of protein profiling for assessing food safety and traceability. The aim is to explore, develop and apply mass spectrometry-based methods for a range of proteins (including allergens) found in complex matrices. We’re now looking for Campden BRI members to highlight their areas of interest.
Fast track food innovation
By Emma Hanby - 28 February 2017
'Food development', 'new product development', 'product innovation' – whatever you call it, developing new successful products is essential for food and drink companies to grow and thrive. In many companies more than half of revenue comes from products that were not in the product line five years earlier, so it’s important that ‘NPD’ is done right.
Fibre - an innovative approach to healthier baked goods
By Nicole Maher - 1 February 2017
There is considerable evidence linking poor dietary choices to higher risks of obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Foods high in fat or sugar have been targeted by health campaigners as playing a key role in the global obesity and diabetes crisis. As a result, calls have been made by government officials to reduce levels of fat and sugar in popular food products such as baked goods.