The Natural Way of Maintaining the Food Shelf Life
Food is one of the basic necessities for every living being. Today, with the increased population and increased demand for various tastes of food, food industries are coming up with a countless number of meals ready to eat. However, if food is kept for a long time, it may lose its quality and becomes not edible. So, to maintain the quality of food for a long time, it is always important to focus more on food preservation. Scientists have come up with several methods of preserving precious food to keep it away from spoiling. In fact, food preservation today has become a part of our life.
Concept of food preservation
The main concept of food preservation is to make food available for extended periods. Preserving food slows down the food spoilage and helps to maintain the quality and nutritional value of the food for a long time, which in turn decreases the wastage of food. Food preservation helps in enjoying any food in any season without shortages and with no change in taste and nutritional value. For example, if you are in a mood of enjoying fresh peas in the hot summer, then it is all possible with food preservation to enjoy peas that are canned and dehydrated.
Food preservation also helps in the increase of food supplements and also increases the shelf life of food products. Apart from all, fulfilling the need for food for the increased number of population in today’s world, food preservation is highly important.
Things to consider for food preservation
Though there are various methods available for food preservation, yet it is always important to focus on certain things while applying any method. It is important to concentrate mainly on the texture, nutrients, and taste of food whenever one decides to go with any food preservation method. It is important to concentrate on the prevention of microorganisms, which is the main cause of food spoilage.
Food preservation methods
Today with the increased demand for science and technology, chemically synthesized food preservation is highly used. However, as per various studies, it is found that this chemical way of preserving food is not healthy. Though this is a simple way of preserving food for a long time yet it is not good for health. Apart from changing the original flavor of food, this way of preserving food also causes food poisoning.
Canning, drying, freezing, smoking, salting, pickling and curing are some of the very common and highly used methods in food preservations. The main aim of all these methods is to keep food away from microorganisms.
Compared to all the other methods of food preservations, spices are believed as one of the best and safest ways of preserving food.
Importance of spices for food preservation
Compared to any other scientific method available for food preservation, the use of simple spices is highly beneficial and safe in preserving food. Though spices uses are mainly for flavoring and coloring of food yet are also used for food preservation. Most people are yet not aware of this amazing and easy way of food preservation. Though the current technology ensures an easy way of preserving food like pasteurizing, freezing, and drying, yet it may not ensure the quality and nutritional value of the food.
People today are becoming more health-conscious, and they are demanding natural compounds for food preservation. Though numerous studies proved the possible application of various spices yet very few are applied on the market.
Examples of different spices for food preservation
Though all the spices that are available in our kitchen are used for food preservation yet, one needs to be well aware of its usage in the correct way. This is because different spices are used for different foods for best preservation. Let us have a look at some examples of spices in the preservation of different foods:
Rosemary – Essential oil of rosemary is highly believed to have the best preservative properties in meat products. Its antimicrobial and antioxidant activity helps in preserving meat products for a longer time.
Mustard – It is commonly used in preserving sliced raw tuna, cheese, and fresh beef, where it has a strong antimicrobial activity and is proven as an effective way of increasing the shelf life of these food products.
Cloves, oregano, and cinnamon – Water extracts of cloves and cinnamon are tested as the perfect way of preserving raw chicken.
Apart from the above mentioned, there are many other spices that are believed as the best food preservations like pepper, ginger, saffron, turmeric, garlic, coriander, and many more that are proven as a safe way of preserving food without any fear of health issues. Apart from increasing the shelf life of food, these spices also help us in many ways, like the stimulation of saliva, prevents cold and influenza, and improving digestion as well.