What are Food Additives?

Everything you eat, whether it is fresh or processed, is made up of a combination of chemicals. An apple for example, is naturally composed of pectin, hemicellulose, cellulose, starch, sucrose, glucose, fructose, ascorbic acid, and other substances. The addition of still another chemical will cause changes in the apple. Here is an example. When you cut an apple and expose it to the air, it will turn brown. But if you add citric acid or ascorbic acid to the cut, the apple will not change color. In simple terms, this is the concept of additives.

Food additives are substances added to foods during production, processing, storage or packaging. They are purposely added for specific functions. Some are unintentionally present in the final food product, such as the minute amounts of packaging material that get into food.

Food additives have been used through out history. Salt has been used as preservative. Spices and condiments have added flavor. And color agents have change the appearance of food. Today's food supply contains food additives for many of the same reasons. But because our food consumption and life style patterns have changed, the use of additives has increased.

We will discuss the functions of additives later so stay tune, follow and subscribe to our social media accounts.


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