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Food Science & Innovation Weekly News Round-up - Oct. 4 2019

Each week we collect the top stories and latest news in food trends and production, making it easy for you to stay current on science and innovation.

Americans are slowly getting better at healthy eating

A new study published by the Journal of the American Medical Association has found Americans are gradually making healthier choices in their eating habits than they have in the past. The report card on the American diet, which came out in late September, analyzed the diets of 44,000 people and determined that we are eating three percent fewer highly processed foods with added sugars. The report also found that the average American gets 42% of their daily calories from refined grains, starches and added sugars and only 9% from fruits and whole grains. Read more at Greenwich Time

Cargill further commits to sustainability

Cargill has formed a new Land Use and Forest Protection Advisory Panel to increase progress across supply chains. The panel will serve as the basis for the input of global partners and non-governmental organizations and is designed to implement strategies and make sure resources supporting Cargill’s forest commitments are adequate to deliver positive socio-economic and environmental impact. It will build on the company’s existing work with advisers and thought leaders, which resulted in a revised Global Forest Policy and accompanying Land Use Operating Guidelines in the past two years, both of which are now being actively implemented across the company’s businesses. Read more at Baking Business

Rethinking packaging: Software can help manage the transition to more sustainability

Consumer awareness about the environmental hazards of plastic, especially in food and beverage packaging, has reached a tipping point. Although plastic provides a relatively inexpensive container that can protect taste and prolong the freshness of food, the shocking amount of unrecycled plastic bottles floating in oceans and washing onto beaches is driving public outcry and demand for changes. For manufacturers in the food and beverage industry, this means pressure to rethink packaging strategies, revise go-to-market plans and forge new supply chain partners. Read more at FoodDive

Clean labels and the sustainability agenda: Does the drive for natural food hurt nature?

Consumer interest in clean label or natural ingredients continues to rise. However, given our finite natural resources, is this inhibiting the development of products that could be better for the environment? Afterall, there is only so much land available for food cultivation. So is the rejection of synthetic ingredients and science-driven processing problematic for the sustainability agenda? A number of experts in product development and sustainability weigh in. Read more at FoodNavigator

Consumers still eat too much sugar, starch and saturated fat

A new study found U.S. consumers continue to eat too many carbohydrates from sugar and starch, as well as too much saturated fat. The study, looking at nearly 44,000 adults from 1999 to 2016 and published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, said 42% of adult calorie intake came from low-quality carbs, and that saturated fat consumption remained above the recommended 10% of daily calories. The U.S. and Chinese researchers who conducted the study did note some progress. There were drops in consumption of low-quality carbohydrates—mainly added sugar—and increases in high-quality ones like whole grains. Read more at Food Dive

How different kinds of fiber affect the microbiome

Earlier this year, Medical News Today reported on a World Health Organization-commissioned meta-analysis that indicated that eating between 25 and 29 grams of fiber each day correlates with a lower incidence of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, stroke, and colon cancer. While doctors advise some people to follow a low-fiber diet due to specific health conditions, such as inflammatory bowel disorder, for most people, a high-fiber diet is key for gut health. But which fibers are best? A team of researchers from Washington University School of Medicine, in St. Louis, along with international collaborators, set out to answer this question with a long-term view of developing what they call microbiota directed foods, to improve our health. Read more at Medical News Today


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