Sometimes it seems like food additives and preservatives have gotten a bad name recently and for no good reason. Some people claim they want to go back to a time before preservatives, but those people don’t know what they’re asking for. Food preservatives are among the most important achievements and breakthroughs in human cooking history, and they are to thank for our current ability to feed people around the world.
If you’ve never stopped to think about how important food additives and preservatives are, here are a few things to chew on.
Food Preservation Is as Old as Human History
One of the greatest challenges faced by every human civilization is the problem of obtaining enough food for its people and keeping that food edible even in hard times. Everywhere on Earth, the solution was to devise food additives and preservatives.
You might think of substances such as salt and sugar as commonplace – and they are today – but thousands of years ago they were the miracle additives that allowed meats, vegetables, fruits, and more to stay good for far longer than they would normally. After all, most foods will begin to rot after just a few days. Preservatives can keep them edible for weeks, months, even years!
Today, we have a much wider range of food additives at our disposal, but the purpose remains the same: allowing as many people as possible to safely eat.
Food Additives and Preservatives Make Food Safer and Tastier
Beyond the basics of making food last longer, food additives and preservatives have numerous other uses. For example:
- Preventing disease. Nitrates are commonly added to processed meats, such as sausage, to inhibit the formation of botulism and other deadly diseases.
- Maintaining texture. Food in cans and jars tends to break down into mush. Firming agents such as calcium chloride can be added so that the food retains its texture and is still enjoyable even after months.
- Regulating food creation. Most foods created through complicated means – such as cheese-making or beer-brewing – utilize additives to help regulate the process and ensure better-quality end products.
- Improving flavor. After all, we still add salt and sugar just for the taste, even if we don’t need them as preservatives!
FBC Industries Helps Feed the World
We’re a leading supplier of healthy, closely vetted liquid food additives and preservatives, trusted by food companies around the world. Contact us to learn more about our products and to request a sample today.