Perspective

IFT is a nonprofit scientific society of individual members working in food science, food technology, and related professions in industry, academia, and government. The views and opinions posted on Perspective are those of authors and these opinions do not necessarily reflect the positions of IFT.


Cannabis and hemp edibles

Bringing food science into the cannabis, hemp edibles conversation

In January 2018, with California joining existing legalized states, 21% of the U.S. adult population will be able to consume edible cannabis products legally. The fact that 1-in-5 adults will be able to purchase cannabis-containing foods and beverages by simply visiting a local storefront merchant means that the industry has surpassed its tipping point. Supplying the new demand is a food sector that did not exist five years ago, but is currently supplying more than 40 million servings a year with an outlook to produce 600+ million servings by 2021. It is simply astonishing that this activity is taking place with only informal and peripheral participation by food science organizations.

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Bringing food science into the cannabis, hemp edibles conversation

August 2, 2017
In January 2018, with California joining existing legalized states, 21% of the U.S. adult population will be able to consume edible cannabis products legally. The fact that 1-in-5 adults will be able to purchase cannabis-containing foods and beverages by simply visiting a local storefront merchant means that the industry has surpassed its tipping point. Supplying the new demand is a food sector that did not exist five years ago, but is currently supplying more than 40 million servings a year with an outlook to produce 600+ million servings by 2021. It is simply astonishing that this activity is taking place with only informal and peripheral participation by food science organizations.  (Read more)

Can We Really Cut Food Waste in Half?

January 31, 2017
It was disappointing to see recent figures from the United Kingdom showing that household food waste is on the rise again (although per capita waste is still roughly constant). The United Kingdom became a world leader in curbing food waste when, from 2007 to 2012, its households cut the amount of edible food they threw away by 21%. Looking at the analysis available, I remain convinced that we can achieve a 50% reduction in food waste, despite this recent slowing of progress. (Read more)

Simple Tips for Communicating Science

November 16, 2016
As a mom of two and science communicator who uses several forms of media and varied tactics to reach the public, I’ve learned several dos and don’ts of the trade. The following five tips highlight some of what has worked for me as a writer, author, avid social media participant, and science activist who works with scientists and other experts to help my audience sift through heaps of information in the media and marketplace alike.  (Read more)

A Wake-up Call for ‘Big Food’

September 16, 2016
As reported in A.T. Kearney’s “Is Big Food in Trouble?” report, the top 25 food manufacturers in the United States have ceded 300 basis points of market share to small- and medium-sized competitors since 2012—and have had anemic annual growth of 1.8%. (Read more)

Brexit: Food Industry Implications

July 6, 2016
The UK vote in favor of leaving the European Union (EU) sent shockwaves through the global market.  (Read more)

Nutrition Facts Label Changes Drive Industry Reformulation

June 8, 2016
Late last month the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) finalized the new Nutrition Facts label on packaged foods, which includes some major changes to the nutrients required to be listed, the way the serving sizes are written, and the label design.  (Read more)

Will New Dietary Guidelines Shift Americans Toward Healthy Eating Patterns?

February 8, 2016
On January 7, health professionals and policymakers heralded the 2015–2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA), updated to reflect current nutrition science.  (Read more)

Vanilla: From Concern, to Crisis, to Creating Solutions

January 27, 2016
Prices reached a historic low, allowing food and beverage companies that use vanilla to enjoy a stable vanilla flavor cost of goods. While everyone was “riding the wave” of low-cost vanilla, the market forces behind the scenes for what we are seeing now were building. (Read more)

Imbalance, not meat, to blame for disease

December 16, 2015
Diets high in red and processed meat have long been shown in epidemiological studies to be associated with increased cancer risk. The World Cancer Research Fund/American Institute for Cancer Research (WCRF/AIRC) labeled processed meat as a “probable carcinogen” and red meat as a “possible carcinogen” based on an extensive analysis of the literature.  (Read more)

Walmart’s interest in drone delivery will change the food conversation

November 20, 2015
Customers want to shop whenever, wherever, and however. This demand applies to all facets of commerce, including grocery. New digital capabilities are creating fresh potential for the grocery industry, with the latest buzz surrounding drone delivery. (Read more)

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About

Welcome to Food Technology’s Perspective—a venue where our authors and experts will deliver insight into the sometimes chaotic food industry. Consider it your go-to source for the inside track on late-breaking industry issues.

Perspective is a place to share ideas and thoughts on industry issues using the timeliest vehicle possible—the Web. Check back often, because our experts will be posting regularly.

If there’s a topic out there you feel we need to address, let us know. You can email ideas to bswientek@ift.org or khensel@ift.org. After all, the whole point of this is to give you a venue to voice your thoughts on the latest food-related happenings and, hopefully, gain insight from others’ perspectives.