Basic Terms About Food Wastage, Spoilage and Storage

healthscholar.blogspot.comFood waste is food substance that is useless, rejecting a piece of fruit, because it is slightly crumpled, bashed or has a mark. Food waste is also the throwing away of food, which could have been eaten by oneself or by others. The causes of wasted food are numerous, and occur at the stages of production, processing, and retailing. These are the basic causes of wastage of food.

Causes of Food Waste
  • Inability to store properly due to inadequate facilities
  • Wastage caused by attack of stored food by pests
  • Man's inability to cook or accumulate what you needs
  • Poor harvesting methods resulting in damages of food
  • Unavailability of market to dispose of the crop
  • Farm Produce are inaccessible due to bad roads
  • Attack of moulds on farm crops
  • The destruction of stored fruits by larvae or worms
  • Microbial attack caused by bacteria, viruses or fungi on the food crop

Food Spoilage is the changes in exterior part, appearance, flavour, odour, and other qualities of the food due to microbial growth which causes it to worsen and destroy by decay.


Causes of Food Spoilage
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  • Saprophytic bacteria and fungi from the soil
  • Rodents like rats
  • Insect pests like cockroaches and houseflies
  • Chemical changes within the food
  • Untreated sewage used in fertilization process can easily contaminate the food
  • Contaminated water can easily affect the food
  • Contaminated air
  • Human handling can contaminate the food through wound running-nose or through contagious diseases

Food Storage is both a traditional home skill which is also important industrially. Food is store for different and several purpose like storing of harvested food that are also processed food products for distribution to consumers of plant and animals, allowing an improved balanced diet during the year, decreasing kitchen misuse or waste by conserving uneaten food for later use, protecting from theft or animal
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Importance of Food storage
  • The food is economised
  • Perishable food is saved from spoiling
  • The food is saved from pest infestation
  • There is always reserve, especially during scarcity
  • Good quality foods are always available

Basic Methods of Food Preservation or Storage
  • Canning and bottling accompanied with some preservatives and pressure
  • Dehydration prevents spoilage by bacteria and enzymes
  • Osmotic preservation through the use of sugar or salt
  • Smoking Dehydrates the food and retards spoilage
  • Freezing prevents spoilage as only very few organisms can thrive at a very low temperature
  • The use or refrigeration goes a long way in preserving food stuffs like vegetables and fruits
  • Pasteurization (i.e. heating to 63 for 30minutes) is very effective; moreso, when it is rapidly cooled
  • Sterilization through ultra heat tretment (UHT)
  • Food additives - natural inhibitors such as (i) lactic acids (ii) fatty acids (iii) acetic acids (iv) alkanol (alchohol). Artificial additives are (i) sodium benzoate (ii) trichloro acetic acid (iv)sulphur dioxide

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