Experts weigh in on the art and science of preserving food

By Muskan Beigh, Sabreena Yousuf , Saila Malik, Sana Azad

In a world where food preservation has deep-rooted traditions, the latest advancements are now making headlines. Food preservation, a practice as old as human civilization itself, is evolving to meet the needs of the modern world. From time-honoured methods to cutting-edge technology, the science behind preserving food is taking a giant leap forward.

While high-tech solutions are on the rise, many traditional food preservation techniques continue to shine. Pickling, salt-curing, fermentation, and smoking remain popular across the globe. These time-tested methods not only extend the shelf life of food but also bring unique flavours to preserved delicacies.

Dr. Shabir Ahmad, an Assistant Professor of Food Technology at Govt. College for Women, M.A. Road (Srinagar), emphasized the enduring appeal of these techniques. “Food processing has been a part of human civilization since its inception,” he said. “Our forebears relied on these traditional methods, and they continue to serve us well today. The primary goal of food preservation is to increase the shelf life of food, and it’s a goal that stands the test of time” he added.

Dr. Kaiser Younis, an assistant professor of food technology at the Islamic University of Science and Technology Awantipora, drew attention to the exciting developments in food preservation. “Novel preservative techniques are emerging as friendly helpers to preserve food,” he explained. One standout in this category is bio-preservatives, offering a sustainable approach to extending the shelf life of food.

In the quest for more sustainable and efficient food preservation, several high-tech methods are gaining prominence. High-Pressure Processing (HPP) uses pressure to eliminate bacteria without heat, preserving the nutritional value and flavour of foods. Vacuum packaging, Modified Atmosphere Packaging (MAP), smart packaging, and even Nanotechnology are all contributing to the evolving landscape of food preservation. Furthermore, cold plasma technology is being explored to decontaminate surfaces and packaging, reducing the risk of spoilage, while advanced refrigeration systems provide precise control over storage conditions.


As the world grapples with food sustainability, these advancements in food preservation hold the promise of reducing waste and ensuring that we can enjoy fresh and nutritious meals for longer periods. The blend of traditional wisdom with modern innovation is key to a future where food can be both preserved and enjoyed in an increasingly eco-conscious world.

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