Preservation technologies and functional foods


  • Recovery of native resources from the use of by-products
  • Bioactive food components from various sources
  • Emerging technologies for food preservation

It is very well known that Ecuador is a country that is rich in diversity of agricultural products whose functional properties (raw materials and by-products) have not been sufficiently exploited yet. This is good, if we think of the potential in carrying out research aimed at discovering the value of native products and the use of by-products from different sources (Zambrano S, 2014), as well as the preparation and characterization of organic waste that is nutritional, harmless and with added value. At the agro-industrial level, various raw materials are transformed by undergoing different unit operations in order to give them added value and thus facilitate their consumption. However, this also results in the production of waste that could, in some cases, become a problem of environmental pollution in water, soil, atmosphere and ecological niches (Cury et al, 2017). Likewise, it is known that these by-products are a source of compounds with technological or nutritional functionality, to mention an example, a high content of antioxidants (polyphenolic compounds) that can have a beneficial effect on health is obtained from citrus processing residues (Londoño -Londoño et al, 2010). Therefore, the development of new techniques and methods is important to be able to take advantage of the by-products generated from agro-industrial processing (Méndez, 1995), which could finally be used in food for human or animal consumption or destined for industrial applications. The studies could target characterizing different agro-industrial by-products using different methods to evaluate their possible application as natural additives, antimicrobial agents, among others that allow the production of functional foods without chemical additives (they can be carcinogenic). This alternative would undoubtedly help in two ways: by reducing the environmental impact with the use of by-products and by designing foods with a positive impact on health.