Food Technology: The Game Changer & the Future

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Food tech - cake bakery
Image from Pixabay

Food technology along with healthy food brings healthy life. Food, the most important requirement for humankind is getting to the next level along with the use of technologies because of the decrease in quality of food and increase in knowledge about its effects. Technology is used here to come up with new inventions to develop and protect food to increase its quality. It plays a major role right from production till it reaches the customers.

Interestingly, Robots are not only used for manufacturing but also for serving customers. A Seoul restaurant, where a robot called CLOi Serve-Bot by LG Electronics, can serve four trays at a time without spilling a drop, can predict obstacles and plays music to convey its presence.

Latest trends in food technology

Biodegradable packaging

We can see a drastic change from the use of plastics to biodegradable covers/packs. For example, it’s been a long time since we have stopped using plastics and shifted to things like paper plates, straws from the stem, paper bags, and cardboard.

Biodegradable packaging is completely plant-based where sources like sugarcane, starch, and corn are used to produce Polylactic acid. Packages made from these are not reusable yet biodegradable and are cost-efficient. The main advantage is adaptability and the way it easily gets decomposed. A part of this is Shelf Stable barrier packaging, generally used where the product requires to possess moisture and oxygen.

Precision agriculture

Increasing crop yields is crucial and ways for achieving it have been developed. Precision agriculture, also called site-specific crop management, is a farming management principle focused on ensuring the needs for productivity and health between and within fields. Precision agriculture research aims to develop a decision support system (DSS) for whole-farm management that maximizes input returns while conserving resources. Commonly used technologies include:

  • Technologies for managing real-time data 
  • Softwares for guidance and planning
  • Drones to capture real-time images and monitor them
  • GPS and GNSS (Global Navigation Satellite System) are used to monitor anything from chlorophyll levels to plant water status. 
  • Variable-rate technology (VRT), such as seeders and sprayers, uses this data in combination with satellite imagery to disperse energy optimally. 

Food startups

Today, it has become very normal to sit at home, order food through startups like Swiggy/Zomato/Uber, and enjoy it. It has to be noted that up to 70% of the sale happens through these startups. This is a rapidly growing and also the busiest startups to be noted. We can clearly see the ease of accessibility to food products, groceries, even medicines. Technology has changed everything and made it as simple as ordering it with a single tap through its app.

Retail stores like BigBazar, Reliance Markets, Dmart, and many others have made us buy all the products in a single go. Food trucks are trending around in each city with different recipes and also advertising in their own way.

Advances heading up

Cell pod

Food technology: A Cell pod
Image from globalgradeshow.com

Cell pod, a home appliance that grows ingredients for a healthy meal within a week from plant cells, is one of the most advanced food technology till now. Plant biotechnology researchers are working on a commercially available home appliance that will enable people to grow fresh food. Growing plant cells in a bioreactor isn’t a new concept, but new technologies are allowing the development of a plant cell incubator for home use that produces a harvest in a short amount of time.

The principle is focused on growing a plant’s undifferentiated cells rather than the entire plant. To put it another way, only the “best” sections of a plant are grown. Since these cells contain the entire genetic capacity of the plant, they will produce the same healthy compounds as the rest of the plant, such as antioxidants and vitamins.

Ghost kitchen

A ghost kitchen
Image from specials-images.forbesimg.com

Ghost kitchen is something that has all the types of equipment for preparing delivery-only meals, ordered online using third-party apps.

Pros of constructing a Ghost restaurant:

  • Shared kitchen space:

It doesn’t necessarily belong to a particular restaurant, it may have facilities for multiple brands. 

  • Cost-efficient:

Has potential for higher profit margins as there is no dining, no waitstaff, and also takes less time for its setup.

  • Appealing since pandemic:

Due to the Covid pandemic, people have become cautious about going out to eat. So, this gives a chance to take advantage of the restaurants to get a boom in orders.

Lab-grown meat

Lab-grown meats are cultured in labs that were originally derived from live animal cells. Cultured meat uses fewer of the planet’s resources, and no animals are needed to be slaughtered in this process. No wonder, this would become a huge part of our upcoming years.

The greatest challenge faced is the lack of its natural taste. Yet, scientists and entrepreneurs are working on it to make it close enough until the public won’t mind that it comes from a laboratory. Companies like BeyondMeat and ImpossibleFoods offer plant-based meat, this also an innovative and helpful food technology developed.

Related Article:

Check out- ‘Food Tech: The Use of Traceability in Food Industry’

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