Consumer Insights, Usability, Sensory Evaluation

Food History Tidbits


Foods have been processed for thousands of years on a relatively small scale.  Early processing techniques included brining meats, smoking fish, drying fruits, and fermenting dairy, grains, and grapes.  It was only in the last 200 years that food processing became a large scale activity with commercial enterprises working to make food available to the masses.  Below are some highlights in the history of Food Processing.




circa 5 BC

Babylonian clay tablet recording ingredients in Beer and steps in Brewing. 








1810  Nicholas Appert, a French confectioner turned scientist, writes a treatise of experiments on the new technology of heat preservation of foods.  Appert is considered "the father of the canning industry".


  This cannister of veal is from Sir William Edward Parry's 1824 expedition to the Arctic.



     1820 Frederick Accum of Great Britain writes

A Treatise on Adulterations of Food and Culinary Poisons.






Signed into law by President Lincoln, the Morrill Act established Land Grant Colleges in an effort to increase  efficiency of agricultural production. The Smith-Lever Act of 1914 started federal funding of Cooperative Extension.  



  NY Times 1927  



1890's  The cooking school movement begins, ushering in an era of growth in scientific information about  cooking, nutrition, and health. The Boston Cooking School Magazine, later known as American Cookery, begins publication.






1897 Jell-O gelatin is created by the Gennese Pure Food Company in LeRoy, NY.       









Before pasteurization was the law, milk was a carrier of diseases such as tuberculosis, typhoid fever, scarlet fever, and summer diarrhea.  Safe, heat processed milk was labeled as "Certified".  








Cover of The Progessive Grocer, April 1929





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