According to NPR, the average American literally ate a ton of food last year, with most of the food consisting of cheese, sweets, potatoes and grains. The data, provided by the USDA, indicated that we each consume about 630 pounds of dairy per year and 185 pounds of meat and poultry. Americans consumed 273 pounds of fruit and 415 pounds of vegetables, but the majority of vegetables were starch-heavy corn and potatoes.
All that is topped off with 141 pounds of sweetener, including 42 pounds of corn syrup, and 85 pounds of fats. The USDA estimates the average American eats nearly 2,700 calories per day, which is significantly higher than the 2,000 recommended for an average person.
Gizmodo reported that researchers at the University of Copenhagen have come up with a “magnetic tongue” that could be used by food processors to “taste” the flavor of tomatoes during the canning process.
The scientists said they were able to determine the levels and types of sugars and amino acids in 18 tomato samples, which were also tested by professional human tasters. The researchers correlated the results of the machine with the descriptions of the human taste testers, and then they say they were able to create their mechanical tester to determine the bitterness, sweetness, sourness, saltiness, texture and density of the products.
> An LA Times article reported that many popular products, including cereal, muffin mix and more that claim to feature blueberries, in reality, do not. In place of blueberries, food manufacturers are using sugar, other flavorings and some food coloring. This news in itself isn’t that surprising. What is surprising is that some of these products tout the presence of real blueberries on the packaging. I suppose it’s a good thing I make my blueberry muffins from scratch…
> If you love bananas, you may want to start eating them as much as possible, because bananas are on the verge of disappearing, at least that’s what an article in The New Yorker argued. The issue is that banana growers rely on only one variety, and that variety is currently being threatened by a fungus that could wipe out the entire fruit.
It seems l ike food producers are always looking for new ways to increase product quality, and here’s a really interesting one: playing classical music. According to The Japan Times, a Japanese fruit company is using Mozart’s music to ripen it’s bananas. I have no idea if this actually works, but apparently it’s selling well. And it’s not only fruit companies who are “going bananas” for the classics. A Japanese sake brewing company is using Mozart during the brewing process.