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Scientific and Technical Resources

As the authoritative voice on the science of food, the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) produces scientific and technical resources on food and nutrition-related issues and topics of interest to IFT members, other scientific constituencies, government officials, the news media and the public. These resources are intended to help inform public dialogue and facilitate science-based outcomes.

This Special Supplement to IFT’s Journal of Food Science addresses traceability in seafood, implementation of interoperable traceability technology, and experiences in other sectors. The supplement was funded in part by the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, and results from a collaboration among FishWise, Future of Fish, World Wildlife Fund, and the IFT Global Food Traceability Center.

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This report from IFT’s Global Food Traceability Center outlines results of a study exploring the impact of traceability on improving seafood industry business performance, including reducing waste, and enhancing consumer trust. Traceability practices and systems of 48 seafood businesses were assessed in an evaluation of 9 global seafood value chains.

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Intended for regulatory agencies and the food industry, the guidance applies the Critical Tracking Events – Key Data Elements (CTE–KDE) framework to 6 food sectors: bakery, dairy, meat and poultry, processed foods, produce, and seafood. An analysis across these sectors determines broader applicability to other foods. The guidance is intended to serve as a step toward consistent baseline requirements for food traceability.

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This resource examines the food traceability regulations of 21 Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development countries with attention to whether these regulations are comprehensive for all food commodities and processed foods.

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This article addresses the issue of food product date labeling and its history in the United States, the varying terms and practices used, U.S. and international frameworks, quality compared with safety, adverse impacts of misconceptions about date labeling, and advantages of technological innovations. The authors called for collaboration to develop a simple workable solution to address the challenges faced by stakeholders; and they issued a 4-part call to action to: establish date labeling uniformity, educate consumers, reexamine regulatory enforcement, and conduct more research on indicator technologies.

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This IFT Scientific Status Summary outlines the challenges and complexities of the issue from the perspectives of four experts in the field.

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This IFT Scientific Review provides a historical look at the food system, the many challenges ahead, and the crucial role of food science and technology in meeting the needs of the growing population. 

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When food safety managers detect an undesirable chemical contaminant or unanticipated chemical substance in a food commodity, ingredient, or finished product, they must quickly assess human health impact, often with limited scientific information. This IFT Expert Report delves into the legal U.S. underpinnings of the risk management of chemical substances in foods, international considerations, risk-benefit evaluation, importance of the food matrix to risks and benefits, risk assessment and management, and the need for a new approach to timely decision-making with limited scientific information. 

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This IFT Scientific Status Summary addresses transmissible spongiform encephalopathies and provides an authoritative perspective on the regulatory and trade landscape.

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This IFT Scientific Status Summary discusses the science surrounding this technology, including effectiveness, safety, regulatory approvals and research needs.

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This IFT Scientific Status Summary discusses the sources and incidence of human infection by foodborne parasites and their prevention, detection, and inactivation.

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Latest News right arrow

U.S., South Korea reach agreement on guaranteed market access for American rice

The U.S. Trump administration has reached an agreement with the government of South Korea on market access for U.S. rice.

Kroger partners with Infarm to offer in-store living produce farms

The Kroger Co., America’s largest grocery retailer, and Infarm, an urban farming network, have announced a partnership that will bring modular living produce farms to North America.

Saffron extract may help adults with depressive symptoms

A study published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology suggests that Crocus sativus L., an extract from Spanish saffron is well tolerated when administrated with antidepressant drugs and may help reduce depression in adults with persistent depressive symptoms.

Asia needs $800 billion investment to meet growing food demand

A report produced by consultancy PwC, Rabobank, and Singapore state investor Temasek finds that Asia’s food and agriculture industry needs investment of $800 billion over the next 10 years to meet the region’s growing food demand.

FDA extends comment period on the New Era of Smarter Food Safety

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is extending the comment period by 15 days to allow stakeholders more time to provide input on the New Era of Smarter Food Safety.

Latest Brain Food right arrow

Drawing Creative Inspiration from Your Heritage

Food scientists and technologists encounter numerous challenges each day as they work to bring better, safer, tastier, and more nutritious foods to consumers. Tackling these challenges often requires critical thinking, teamwork, tenacity, and perhaps a little creativity. Acclaimed Chef Sean Sherman discovered a unique challenge early in his culinary career and drew inspiration to address it from an unlikely source – his heritage.

Task Force Shares Recommendations for D&I Process Improvements

IFT hosted a Diversity and Inclusion Virtual Town Hall earlier this week, sharing key research findings, a set of core principles to guide our path forward, system-specific recommendations, and a request for member feedback.

Where There’s Inclusion, Innovation Follows

Research shows that a culture of inclusion has a direct correlation on innovation. Two IFT members share how they have personally experienced the connection between inclusion and innovation within IFT divisions.

Latest From IFTNEXT  right arrow

Researchers’ analysis could yield hardier watermelons

A group of researchers has conducted a comprehensive genomic analysis of all seven species, leading to the development of a new resource that may enable breeders to cultivate tasty, appealing watermelons that are also more disease-resistant and that can be grown in more varied climates.

Developing more flood-resistant crops

Of the major food crops, only rice is currently able to survive flooding. Thanks to new research, that could soon change—good news for regions of the world where rains are increasing in both frequency and intensity.

Probiotics may reduce incidence of acute respiratory infections

A recent study sponsored by Chr. Hansen has determined that if certain strains of probiotics were administered to the U.S. public, healthcare costs related to respiratory infections would decrease by up to $1.4 billion.

Onions, garlic may help reduce breast cancer risk

In the first population-based study to examine the association between onion and garlic consumption and breast cancer in Puerto Rico, researchers at the University of Buffalo and University of Puerto Rico found that women who consumed sofrito more than once per day had a 67% decrease in risk compared with women who never ate it.