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Chemistry Overview - Overview PowerPoint - Podcast

Noel Anderson
Division Research Director
Post Division
Kraft Foods
Rye Brook, NY

 

B.S. - Food Science and Nutrition, University of Massachusetts
M.S. - Food Science and Nutrition, University of Massachusetts
Ph.D. - Food Science and Nutrition, University of Massachusetts
Division Research Director, Post Division


Noel Anderson, associate research director at Kraft General Foods, points out that few people recognize the science that is behind the food products they consume. While food science involves the application of chemistry, biology, physics, biochemistry, microbiology, nutrition, and engineering to the development and distribution of food, Anderson points out that the major portion of a food science curriculum is chemistry.

If you were asked to make a pudding-type dessert that would be sold out of the refrigerator section of the supermarket, what would you put in it? asks Anderson. "First," he says, "you begin with milk which provides the liquid and the protein for the system. Then, you add starch to thicken the formulation. Why does starch thicken?" he asks.

Anderson explains that as starch expands, it traps liquids that help create the pudding texture. But after two or three days, the expanded starch molecules start coming back together. As they come back together, the starch leaks water, which, for a consumer product, is undesirable. "Consequently," he says, "we work with chemically modified starches to prevent this from happening."

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