Food Preservation Storage

Lesson 02: Food Spoilage


Healthy tissues inside foods and foods in their natural form resist infection and they do not harbour microorganisms. On the other hand, spoilage of highly perishable foods is natural. The onset of food spoilage is rather indefinite. It is a gradual process occurring because of poor sanitation, enzymatic or chemical reactions, improper temperature controls, microbial growth or physical abuse starting from the time food is harvested, slaughtered or manufactured till it is consumed. Physical changes, such as bruising or puncturing of tissue and water loss and chemical changes, such as those caused by enzymes; or the effects of microbial growth can make food unappealing.

Foods undergo undesirable changes in the physical and chemical characteristics of food ultimately leading to spoilage of food. In general, food spoilage is a state in which food is deprived of its good or effective qualities. Spoilage of food refers to the undesirable alterations in foods or the food undergoes some physiological, chemical and biological changes, which renders it inedible or hazardous to eat. In extreme cases, the food becomes totally unpalatable and unfit for human consumption. Hence, it is essential to process or preserve foods after it is harvested or slaughtered to combat the problem of food spoilage.

Last modified: Wednesday, 7 March 2012, 6:47 AM