FUNCTIONAL FOODS II: CLAIMS AND EVIDENCE. Judy Buttriss and Mike Saltmarsh, eds. Royal Society of Chemistry, Cambridge, United Kingdom. In North America, order from Springer Verlag New York, Inc., P.O. Box 2485,Secaucus, NJ (call 800-777-4643; fax 201-348-4505; e-mail: [email protected]). ISBN: 0-85404-789-1. 2000. 244 pp. £59.50.

Functional foods have captured the imagination of food scientists worldwide. These proceedings of a 1999 conference of the British Nutrition Foundation and the Royal Society of Chemistry summarizes research from Europe and New Zealand. The book opens with a refreshing look at issues in conducting clinical trials for functional foods. Approximately 50 pages are devoted to a thorough examination of functional food regulatory issues in Europe. This material has previously been published in the British Journal of Nutrition. The illustrations and tables of opportunities for food product development are helpful. Seven papers addressing pre- and probiotics follow. These papers cover many topics and will be of interest to scientists looking to exploit these benefits in the U.S. Are phytochemicals quick-fixes for all that ails us? A.F. Walker of Reading University explores the science behind phytochemicals and offers sage (no pun intended) advice about using plant extracts in functional foods. Phytoestrogens, folate, and fish oil are among the hot topics addressed in succinct volunteered papers. Nine poster presentations are published, representing evaluations of novel and traditional foods, including rye, which may turn out to be the oat bran of the naughts.

The small font is a distraction, but the layout is clear. The majority of papers are easy to read and accompanying material is clear. An adequate index is provided. This is not the book for scientists looking for an overview of the field; however, individuals already working with functional foods may find this book very helpful. Despite the suggestive title, this book does not provide the quality and quantity of evidence required to develop a health claim in the U.S. I would recommend this book for individuals looking to develop foods for Europe and apply European research to American foods.

Mary Ellen Camire, Professor, Dept. of Food Science & Human Nutrition, University of Maine, Orono, Maine

EXTRUDERS IN FOOD APPLICATIONS. Mian N. Riaz, ed. Technomic Publishing Co., Inc., P.O. Box 3535, 851 New Holland Ave., Lancaster, PA 17604-9961 (call 800-233-9936 or 717-291-5609; fax 717-295-4538; e-mail: [email protected]). ISBN: 1-56676-779-2. 2000. 223 pp. No price given.

This book is the latest and a welcome addition to a number of books related to food extrusion technology published within last 15 years such as Advances in Extrusion Technology by Chang and Wang, The Technology of Extrusion Cooking by Frame, Food Extrusion Science and Technology by Kokini and others, Food Processing by Ultra High Pressure Twin-Screw Extrusion by Hayakawa, Extrusion Cooking by Mercier and others, and Extrusion Technology for the Food Industry by O’Connor, and so on. One of the common features of these books is all of them are contributed to by many authors. This causes redundancy, and a similar problem is also evident in this new book.

This book has nine chapters contributed by eight scientists and engineers who have many years of practical experience in extrusion. The first chapter introduces various types of extruders and their principles. The following four chapters discuss single-screw extruders, dry extruders, interrupted-flight expanders-extruders, and twin-screw extruders. The last four chapters are “Preconditioning,” “Chemical and Nutritional Changes in Food During Extrusion,” “Practical Considerations in Extrusion Processing,” and “Extruders in the Food Industry.” The appendix shows readers how to evaluate mass and energy balance in extrusion systems. Each chapter is well organized and most chapters also have an extensive list of useful and up-to-date references. Unlike most of other books mentioned earlier, this book has virtually no equations, except in dealing with mass and energy balance in extrusion. Even then, the math involved is minimum. 

Perhaps because it is the first edition, this new book has some typos and errors. For example, diabatic extruders operated at low moisture levels (page 10), more mixing and shearing occurs with the grooved barrel because of greater slippage between the screw flight and barrel walls (page 13), a crucial figure is missing in the appendix (page 206), and the addition sign of the first mass balance equation for calculating the carbohydrate content should be subtraction (page 207), to name just a few. Despite these minor flaws, this book is still an excellent one and it brings in-depth knowledge of extrusion technology for students or professionals interested in food or feed extrusion and their applications in food and feed industries.

Fu-hung Hsieh, Professor, Dept. of Biological and Agricultural Engineering, University of Missouri, Columbia, Mo.

DEVELOPING NEW FOOD PRODUCTS FOR A CHANGING MARKETPLACE. Aaron L. Brody and John B. Lord, eds. Technomic Publishing Co., Inc., P.O. Box 3535, 851 New Holland Ave., Lancaster, PA 17604-9961 (call 800-233-9936 or 717-291-5609; fax 717-295-4538; Web site: ISBN: 1-566676-778-4. 200. 496 pp. $79.95 

The academic training of food scientists does not adequately prepare them to start their industrial career because of their lack of understanding of the dynamics of the food industry. Conversely, those not technically trained lack understanding of the technical problems and challenges required to develop, test, produce, and introduce a successful product into the marketplace. 

This book fills this gap successfully. It is well written and easily understood and should be part of the introduction to foods and required reading for those who wish to pursue their career in the food industry. 

While cursory observation might indicate overlaps in some of the topics, well-recognized experts in their fields present different points of view, adding strength and perspective.

Chapter One is a good review of the overall state of the food industry and lays the ground for the rest of the book. For those who do not wish to delve too deeply into the technical aspects, Chapter Seven does an excellent job discussing food science, technology, and engineering for food product development.

In our present regulatory climate, it is important to understand the need and requirements for labeling and dealing with regulatory issues, and a good basic understanding of this topic is provided. While packaging is an integral part of all foods, it is often a neglected part of most people’s training and understanding. The chapters dealing with this topic are an excellent synopsis of Packaging 101. They describe briefly the various packaging materials used, as they relate to various foods’ shelf-life requirements, tests performed, and the design and marketing functions.

Testing—from both the technical and consumer perspectives, including determining what the consumer needs are and what the market will accept for a new product introduction—will determine the difference between success and failure. The many chapters devoted to this subject recognize this fact. Some of the theoretical calculations are for more advanced reading.

New trends and issues, such as the rapid growth of the ethnic foods segment, increasing role of nutrition, nutraceuticals, genetically engineered foods, and the globalization of the food industry, were briefly introduced, but because of their importance they deserve a more detailed discussion or presentation as a separate chapter.

The concept of specially formed teams for a new product has been successfully used in many large companies, but it is not universally accepted. Including this topic gives thought as to how to organize a successful development team.

This book adds to the understanding of food for the changing marketplace and will be helpful to all those who are beginning their career in the food industry.

Charles Radanovics, IFT Fellow, Consultant, Loudon, Tenn.