IFT Media Update January 13, 2010

January 13, 2010

To: Reporters, Editors, Producers
From: IFT Media Relations

The following news briefs are from the Institute of Food Technologists® (IFT®), a nonprofit scientific society with members working in food science, food technology, and related professions in industry, academia, and government. The briefs are derived from the Journal of Food Science and Food Technology magazine. The monthly media update also includes information on science and policy and IFT events.

For additional information contact 1-800-IFT-FOOD or Jeannie Houchins, MA, RD, jhouchins@ift.org, 312-604-0231.

Food Technology

What, When, and Where America Eats

Current economic conditions in the United States have caused consumers of all ages and incomes to reevaluate, re-prioritize, and experiment with their food spending, eating preferences, and dining habits. But while the elements of America’s recessionary food behaviors are still in flux, it’s clear that they will bring about dramatic change—and that spells new and diverse opportunities for food and beverage marketers. This article notes that as new consumer frugality emerges, it is clear that food consumption will remain centered at home. The industry should expect the home-food-preparation trend to grow more sophisticated and watch for heightened demand for restaurant-style convenience foods, flavored basic meal ingredients, and upscale home-entertaining food options. Lastly, consumers have recognized the critical role of food in maintaining health, but they won’t always be willing to pay a premium price for it.

Read the full article: http://members.ift.org/NR/rdonlyres/0F106002-F29F-42DD-ACC2-4D1EB4A7146C/0/0110feat_americaeats.pdf

Nutrigenomics and Public Health

Nutrigenomic research may uncover the keys to utilizing genetic information to create food products that improve public health through mitigation of chronic diseases. Nutrigenomics is a relatively new and very fast-moving field of research which combines molecular biology, genetics, and nutrition. It focuses on the role of nutritional status or specific nutrients in the regulation of gene expression (Afman and Muller, 2006; Komduur et al., 2009; Mead, 2007). While one of its effects may be the development of personal diets based on an individual’s genetic code and focused on optimizing the expression of certain genes therein, other health-related outcomes show more promise at this juncture and have greater implications for public health promotion (Ordovas and Corella, 2004; Muller and Kersten, 2003). Of significant interest is the potential for greater knowledge of how diet may influence disease state at the gene or molecular levels. Many threats to public health, including cancer, diabetes obesity and other chronic diseases, are influenced to a certain extent by genetic factors.

Read the full article: http://members.ift.org/NR/rdonlyres/83A87858-FCA5-4366-AA20-117F57417B2D/0/0110feat_Nutrigenomics.pdf

Reusable Food Packaging—Reverse Distribution

Recycle, recover, return, recast, repeat, retain, reverse, reuse. All are words that reflect the obsession some have directed to retaining environmental quality on our third rock from the sun. This article takes a closer look at some of this terminology and how they affect food packaging.

Read the full article: http://members.ift.org/NR/rdonlyres/C1800608-D6CB-4626-BC5A-3184A4D254D5/0/0110pkg.pdf

Taste Modulation: A New Sense

They can be called by many names. Taste modulators. Flavor enhancers. Masking agents. Salt replacers. Bitterness blockers. Sugar extenders. Sweetness enhancers or inhibitors. Umami potentiators. Whatever their moniker, these ingredient or flavor systems are called in when things don’t taste right, usually because something has been added (such as a botanical or a mineral) or replaced (such as salt or sugar) in a formulation. And not too surprisingly, they are playing an increasingly important role in today’s food formulating, creating products that are not only more flavorful but can help address growing health challenges, as well.

Read the full article: http://members.ift.org/NR/rdonlyres/3F0ADE1B-7096-4C88-889D-3711A32F341F/0/0110ings.pdf

Feeding the Brain

Initially positioned as products targeted toward the elderly, brain health products are now marketed to demographics like newborns, toddlers, adolescents, adults, and baby boomers. These foods and beverages contain ingredients that aid in brain development, help mental performance, enhance memory, and prevent cognitive decline. This article reviews of some of the ingredients and foods that not only nourish the body but feed the brain too.

Read the full article: http://members.ift.org/NR/rdonlyres/0D8FBBC6-CF3E-4B4A-B838-BAD88493793D/0/0110nutra.pdf

Have You Seen ePerspective?

In a new ePerspective article, Linda Smithson, founder and partner of FoodWatchTrends.com discusses diverse food trends to watch in 2010. http://foodtecheperspective.wordpress.com

Wellness 10

Register now for the Wellness 10 conference March 24-25 at the Chicago O'Hare InterContinental.

This year’s sessions will focus on new marketplace opportunities for healthy products and provide sound insight on key health issues that matter to consumers. Sessions are organized into the following tracks:

• Consumer Lifestyles & Demographics
• Health Issues
• Legal, Regulatory and Standardization

Credentialed media receive complimentary registration. Visit http://www.ift.org/cms/?pid=1001994 for more information or contact Jeannie Houchins, MA, RD, jhouchins@ift.org, 312-604-0231 to register.

Knowledge and Learning

Water Sustainability in Product Development

January 26th, 2010
1:00 – 2:30 p.m. CST

This webcast will explore water conservation practices in product development and ways in which you may be able to cut down on water use. This webcast will also cover why sourcing of water is important and how to determine how much water can be saved.
Credentialed media receive complimentary registration.

Visit http://www.ift.org/cms/?pid=1002166 for more information or contact Jeannie Houchins, MA, RD, jhouchins@ift.org, 312-604-0231 to register.

Food Science for the Non-Food Scientist

Learn the basic principles of food science and equip yourself with an enhanced understanding of the role of food science in the development of food products. Gain a better understanding of the importance of food safety, basic regulatory issues and food science trends.

Credentialed media receive complimentary registration. Visit http://www.ift.org/cms/?pid=1001977 for more information or contact Jeannie Houchins, MA, RD, jhouchins@ift.org, 312-604-0231 to register.

About IFT

The Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) exists to advance the science of food. Our long-range vision is to ensure a safe and abundant food supply contributing to healthier people everywhere. Founded in 1939, IFT is a nonprofit scientific society with members working in food science, food technology, and related professions in industry, academia, and government. IFT champions the use of sound science across the food value chain through knowledge sharing, education, and advocacy, encouraging the exchange of information, providing both formal and informal educational opportunities, and furthering the advancement of the profession. IFT has offices in Chicago, Illinois, and Washington, D.C. For additional information, please visit ift.org.