Food processing is a term used to define the many methods that are used to use raw ingredients to make different foods. In many cases it will use harvested crops or slaughtered animals to produce foods that are jarred or canned and able to last for months at a time before being opened and consumed.
It is said that food processing began during the prehistoric ages when fermenting, sun drying, and preserving was used along with roasting, smoking, and steaming foods. The most common was salt preservation which was used when food was distributed to warriors and soldiers to allow the food to be compact and to last for weeks at a time. However, this method was soon pushed aside by the popular canning method.
In 1809 Nicolas Appert created the bottling vacuum method that helped to keep food safe for the French soldiers. This method was soon added onto by the tinning method created by Peter Durand in 1810. This was an inexpensive method – but it proved fatal because of the amount of lead from the cans that was leaking into the food.
In 1862 Louis Pasteur created the pasteurization method which would help to keep the food safe from any form of micro biological dangers. This method also known as water canning is still used today by manufacturers and provides consumers with a way to purchase food and store it for emergencies.
During World War II food processing plants became more common in order to provide soldiers with food that they could take with them on the battle field. They also provided mothers with instant meals and frozen meals that would make preparing dinner easier. Today these plants have become a staple in society and the way in which we purchase food for meals. Some people have also been taught to use these processing methods at home.