Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Definition of food spoilage

The quality of food can be adversely by physical, chemical, biochemical and microbiological processes. Food spoilage is defined as ‘the change in the characteristics of food that makes it unacceptable’. It refers to food that appears unpalatable such as sour milk or a brown apple.

The cause of these changes can be attributed to physical or biological process.

Generally, a food is considered spoiled when it is no longer acceptable to the consumer. The worst case of spoilage is when it becomes a food safety issue, where the food product may cause the consumer illness or even death.

Less serious cases of food spoilage can simply be that the color, flavor, texture or aroma of the food has deteriorated to the point that is no longer acceptable.

Food spoilage may due to a number of causes:
*Insect damage
*Physical injury due to bruising, pressure freezing, drying and radiation
*The activity of indigenous enzymes in animal and plant tissues
*Chemical changes not induced by microbial or naturally occurring enzymes
*The activity of bacteria, yeasts and moulds

Microorganisms are the major cause of the spoilage of food and are responsible for these chemical changes. Fresh fruits and vegetables easily get contaminated by microorganisms, present in soil, water, air and other environmental sources and various plant pathogens.

To prevent food getting spoiled is it important to know how and why food gets spoiled, which are the foods that are likely to spoil rapidly, what are the factors that bring about quicker spoilage and how food can be prevented from getting spoiled.
Definition of food spoilage
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