Thought for Food Blog

The Rising Popularity of Meat Alternatives in Europe - Part 1

Posted by Sophie Edgington

07-Sep-2018 17:04:04

This is part one of our three part blog series, exploring the options, benefits, risks and popularity of meat alternatives in Europe. Keep an eye out for part two, coming soon!


What’s driving consumer demand for plant-based alternatives to meat?

The European market for meat alternatives is rapidly expanding, with the UK market alone reportedly worth £572m in 2017, a £33m increase from just two years earlier (http://bit.ly/2CKCrYN) and retail sales are predicted to continue growing to £658m by 2021. 

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Topics: meat, vegetables, plant-based diets, dieting, fermented foods, novel foods, food economics, food research, food production, food processing, consumer behaviour, animal welfare, environment and sustainability, health, healthy eating, sensory perception, protein, processed food, social media, appetite and satiety, soy, nutrition, nutrients

How the Lowly Mushroom is Becoming a Nutritional Star

Posted by Shira Rossiter

26-Apr-2018 11:05:00

This post was originally published on The Conversation, and was written by Robert Beelman, Professor of Food Science at Pennsylvania State University.

 

Mushrooms are often considered only for their culinary use because they are packed with flavor-enhancers and have gourmet appeal. That is probably why they are the second most popular pizza topping, next to pepperoni.

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Topics: health, healthy eating, nutrition, dieting, food research, nutrients, cancer, flavour, cholesterol, gluten free, protein, fibre, immune system, superfoods, Asia, selenium, vitamins and minerals, antioxidants, amino acids, genetics, cognitive function, agriculture

Edible Insects – The Food of the Future?

Posted by Naomi McGrath

10-May-2017 08:30:00

The eating of insects, or entomophagy, is not a new concept. In fact, insects have been eaten around the world since prehistoric times.

 

A history of insect consumption

Stable carbon isotope analysis of the bones and dental enamel of australopithecines, for example, has shown that they were significantly enriched in isotope 13C, suggesting that the diet of these people was largely composed of animals feeding on grasses, including insects. Termites are reported to have been included into the Plio-Pleistocene hominin diet, and an analysis of fossils from caves in the USA and Mexico showed that coprolites from caves in Mexico contained ants, beetle larvae, lice, ticks and mites, providing further evidence for entomophagy in human history. 

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Topics: protein, nutrition, Africa, Asia, vitamins and minerals, allergies and allergens, cholesterol, environment and sustainability, fatty acids, food safety, food security, pesticides, texture, insect foods, nutrients, amino acids, magnesium, zinc, calcium, enzymes, consumer behaviour, novel foods

Dieting: is it Really Worth the Sacrifice?

Posted by Chris Cattini

04-Feb-2016 14:22:21

Christmas is a distant memory. For some of us, the annual mission undertaken by chocolate, mince pies, brandy butter and yule log to convert themselves into excess body fat has been a success. Once again we find ourselves in post-yuletide gloom, with weight to lose and fitness to gain.

We all know that New Year resolutions are made to be broken. As the fireworks break out and we blow up what is definitely our last supersized bag of crisps of the season with a salty bang, it’s all too easy to go online and sign up to membership of the local gym. It’s also not that difficult to declare that alcohol will not touch our lips for the foreseeable future and filling up our supermarket trolleys with healthy stuff, including items disregarded in the approach to Christmas (and possibly at most other times of the year too), such as celery and low fat cottage cheese, requires little in the way of moral fibre when we’re still feeling bloated and slightly nauseous due to our recent excesses.

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Topics: diabetes, dieting, nutrients, obesity, cardiovascular health, metabolism, cancer, protein, carbohydrates, cholesterol, omega-3, appetite and satiety

Are Seed Vaults the Key to Food Security?

Posted by Tom Payne

17-Nov-2015 12:00:00

The Doomsday Seed Vaults

The idea of an impending Doomsday has existed in our collective conscious for centuries.

Whether approached from a religious or cultural bent (for example, 2012’s misunderstood Mayan calendar) or a more ‘worldly’ perspective (for instance, concerns over biotechnologies or nuclear warfare), the notion is by no means uncommon.

While the possibility of a global catastrophic event today appears distant, climate change and food insecurity – both imminent causes for concern – already have contingency plans in place. For over a decade, agricultural and food scientists worldwide have been establishing what many call the Doomsday Seed Vaults.

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Topics: food security, agriculture, food production, environment and sustainability, genetic modification (GM), cereals, wheat, protein

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