Food Additives and Why They Are Used
The introductory chapter establishes the context of the book. Food additives have a variety of different roles but in general terms they have two main functions: At the most basic level, they either make food safer, by preserving it from bacteria, preventing oxidation or other chemical changes; or they make food look and taste better or feel more pleasing in the mouth. Additives have been used for hundreds of years for these purposes and 26 different categories of additive are now recognised. The specific roles of the major classes of additive are outlined together with a brief description of the way in which the safety of food additives is managed worldwide. These subjects are developed in later chapters. One aspect of the safety of additives is consumer perception of intolerance, which is addressed briefly together with a consideration of the current industry trend of “clean label”.