Newer Processes

Enough illustrations have been given in detail to show that the profession functions in various settings: industry, trade organizations, universities, the government, and entrepreneurial enterprises. Within recent years, newer forms of processing have arisen. Among them is extrusion processing (21), controlled atmosphere and modified atmosphere storage of fruits and vegetables; controlled atmosphere packaging of food products (22,23); minimal processing coupled with refrigeration and some forms of packaging to permit the marketing of fruits, vegetables, and other kinds of foods (24-25); and edible packaging of various sorts (2628). Not identical to the fresh produce but generally close to it, minimal processed foods have made a decided niche for themselves. Aseptic processing has unquestionably developed for itself a major role in food preservation (29), and ohmic heating is coming to the fore (30).

Irradiation of foods is being considered anew. Outbreaks of food infections or intoxication from organisms on fresh produce has revived the idea of irradiating fruits to destroy pathogenic microorganisms (31).

An area where a major change is taking place in the food field is that of biotechnology or "genetic engineering" as it is sometime called (32-35). Katz (33) points out that the movement toward improved vegetable oils will be helped by the New Plant Genome Initiatives signed into law by President Clinton in 1997. Biotechnology research and other innovations are not without objection (36) or the risk of development of allergenicity (37).

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