FUNDAMENTALS OF PACKAGING TECHNOLOGY. Walter Soroka. Institute of Packaging Professionals, 481 Carlisle Dr., Herndon, VA 22070 (703-318-8970; fax 703-318-0180). 1999. 589 pp. $150 for IoPP members; $195 nonmembers; student discounts available. 

With the exception of the first edition, the second edition of this now classic Fundamentals of Packaging Technology is the most promoted book of the Institute of Packaging Professionals. The reason is financial: the books were published by the Institute and are the texts for the author’s popular course and for the test required for Certified Packaging Professional status. 

This large, relatively durable paperback is a major undertaking by a single author. The sections and chapters blend together effectively, and are profusely illustrated with line drawings of relevant structures referenced in the text. In sum, the book is precisely what its title states: a treatise on fundamentals. It could serve as a textbook for a beginning university course on packaging while modestly stretching the minds of students who have some knowledge of chemistry and physics. When the student has completed the book and its accompanying course, he or she is accomplished; but so much information is packed into the book that it is virtually impossible for anyone to absorb all of it. Thus, those with packaging interests should retain the book as a convenient reference. 

A serious deficiency for food scientists and technologists is that the book hardly touches food packaging. For those topics, other books must be consulted. But this book is as good a description of the world’s packaging materials, structures, converting technologies, and machinery operations as has been published. 

What value does the book have for the food scientist/technologist? He or she can look up almost any element of packaging, ranging from paper material and testing of distribution cases to polymer applications, and find an excellent description with clear pictures. This book is a gem that may be used to learn, refresh, and check—it may be the single best text for capturing almost the entirety of packaging with no pretenses. 

But it is not perfect. Almost no trade names are used, leaving industry readers to wonder about some packaging elements that are almost better known by their commercial than their generic names, thus making it difficult to translate the basics into practice. 

Aaron L. Brody, IFT Fellow, Managing Director, Rubbright•Brody, Inc., Duluth, Ga.

ASIAN FOODS: SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY. Catharina Y.W. Ang, KeShun Liu, and Yao-Wen Huang, eds. Technomic Publishing Co., Inc., P.O. Box 3535, 851 New Holland Ave., Lancaster, PA 17604-9961 (800-233-9936 or 717-291-5609; fax 717-296-4538; E-mail: [email protected]). ISBN: 1-56676-736-9. 1999. 546 pp. $99.95 

This well-written, authoritative reference on Asian/Chinese foods, written and edited by distinguished scientists, will be a valuable addition to your library. The book covers rice products; wheat products: noodles, breads, cakes, cookies; food from other grains and starchy substrates; Oriental soyfoods; Chinese meat products; traditional poultry and egg products; traditional Oriental seafood products; fruit products; vegetable products; fats and oils; Chinese alcoholic beverages; traditional Chinese functional foods as medicines and drugs; cultural aspects of Asian dietary habits; and health implications of Asian diets and supplements. 

With the increasing population of Asians and expanding number of Asian restaurants and consumers of Asian foods in the United States, this book provides the reader with a broad understanding of how these foods are produced and consumed in China/Asia and how their production and use could be expanded in the Western world. It also contains considerable information on the medical and health implications of these foods. 

The book would be even more useful if it contained cross-references to the established Western literature dealing with alcoholic foods and beverages and the chemistry and microbiology of indigenous, fermented Asian foods. For example, there is no reference to Japanese sake or rice wines, other than Chinese. There is no reference to Malaysian/Indonesian tape/tapai sweet/sour alcoholic rice, although there are closely related products in China. The chapters on lactic fermentations of cabbage and other fresh vegetables would be stronger if the Chinese products were tied in with the literature on similar products in the West. Surprisingly, there is no reference to red (Monascus) rice. 

However, these observations in no way detract from the tremendous value and fund of information on Asian/Chinese foods in the present book. I recommend it for food scientists and technologists, for companies interested in importing or producing Asian food products, and for those interested in expanding their knowledge of Asian foods.

Keith H. Steinkraus, IFT Fellow, Professor of Microbiology and Food Science Emeritus, Cornell Univ., Geneva and Ithaca, N.Y.

Evaluation of Certain Veterinary Drug Residues in Food. (50th Report of the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives)
. World Health Organization, Marketing and Dissemination, 1211 Geneva 27, Switzerland. Order No. 1100888. ISBN No. 92-4-120888-0. 1999. 95 pp. softcover. 20; US$18. 

Food Labeling—Requirements for FDA Regulated Products. James L. Vetter. American Inst. of Baking, 1213 Bakers Way, Manhattan, KS 66502 (call 913-537-4750; fax 913-537-1493). ISBN: 880877-00-7. 1999. Looseleaf format, no price given.

Lipids in Nutrition and Health: A Reappraisal. Michael I. Gurr. The Oily Press, P.O. Box 200, Bridgwater TA7 0YZ, England (+44-1823-698973; fax +44-1823-698971; E-mail: [email protected]). ISBN: 0-9531949-1-4. 1999. 220 pp. £49 or $86.

Macroelements, Water, and Electrolytes in Sports Nutrition. Judy A. Driskell and Ira Wolinsky, eds. CRC Press, LLC, 2000 N.W. Corporate Blvd., Boca Raton, FL 33431 (1-800-272-7737; fax 1-800-374-3401). ISBN: 0-8493-8196-7. 1999. 256 pp. No price given.

Sensory Evaluation Techniques, 3rd ed. Morton C. Meilgaard, Gail Vance Civille, and B. Thomas Carr. CRC Press, LLC, 2000 N.W. Corporate Blvd., Boca Raton, FL 33431 (1-800-272-7737; fax 1-800-374-3401). ISBN: 0-8493-0276-5. 1999. 387 pp. $129.95

Sports Nutrition. Judy A. Driskell. CRC Press, LLC, 2000 N.W. Corporate Blvd., Boca Raton, FL 33431 (1-800-272-7737; fax 1-800-374-3401). ISBN: 0-8493-8197-5. 2000. 280 pp. No price given.