Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: January 28, 2010
Publication Date: June 15, 2010
Citation: Wood, D.F., Williams, T.G., Glenn, G.M., Pan, Z., Orts, W.J., Mc Hugh, T.H. 2010. Peering into the Secrets of Food and Agricultural Co-products. Meeting Abstract; 7729:03 Technical Abstract: Scanning electron microscopy is a useful tool for directing product development and is equally important for developing products from food crops and co-products from the agricultural waste after harvest. The current trend in food research is to produce foods that are fast to prepare and/or ready to eat. At the same time, these processed foods must be safe, high quality and maintain all or most of the nutritional value of the original whole foods. Minimally processed foods, is the phrase used to characterize these “new” foods. For example, the consumer wants fresh berries all year round and brown rice that cooks quickly. New techniques are needed which take advantage of minimal processing or processing preserves the fresh properties and characteristics of whole food with less food preparation time. There is an added benefit coupled to less cooking time in an individual kitchen. Less cooking time translates to an overall energy savings and reduces the carbon emissions to the environment. Food processing changes the microstructure evidenced by SEM observation, and therefore, the quality, texture and flavor, of the resulting food product. Thus, product is affected by processing. Unlike food processing however, structural changes are desirable in co-products as function follows form for food packaging films, building materials, and other industrial products. Thus, we use the standard materials testing procedures coupled with SEM to provide direction in the development of products from agricultural residues or what would otherwise be considered waste materials.