It is imperative that the world population has access to a sufficient amount of safe, healthy, and pure food. In her Editorial in Angewandte Chemie, Monika Pischetsrieder, Friedrich-Alexander Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg, Germany, explains what role chemistry plays in this challenge.
In order for all citizens to have access to sufficient amounts of food, the challenge for chemists involves finding solutions for food preservation, processing, and packaging. Foods should contain no contaminants above a certain threshold, and should not be adulterated with cheaper ingredients. Here, chemists can help with the development of highly sensitive analytical techniques.
The major challenge in this context is that analytical techniques can only find what they are looking for. Unknown contaminants might be detected, but will not be recognized. The role of chemists in the development of untargeted analytical approaches and products with longer shelf lives is thus essential for providing safe food for the global population.
- Global Food-Related Challenges: What Chemistry Has Achieved and What Remains to Be Done,
Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2018.