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Salt is one of the most ubiquitous food ingredients around. Those who think of salt only as something used to perk up flavor might wonder what could possibly give this ingredient the level of importance it has gained through the ages. In reality, there is much more to this crystalline cube than first meets the eye.

  • The many benefits of salt - "While most people think of salt as a fairly simple compound, there exists a wide range of salt ingredients designed for specific applications. A salt's characteristics vary with the type of process, types of additives and other criteria, giving this ingredient a level of complexity that may come as a surprise to the uninitiated" (Food Product Design). Learn more...
  • The Science of Salt Reduction in Food -- The food industry is facing up to the issue of salt reduction. But how can this compound - so important in the preparation and storage of food - be replaced without the consumer tasting the difference?
  • Seasoning Secrets for Salty Snacks - "Salt may act as the only flavoring agent, as in the case of plain, salted potato chips or pretzels. It can get top billing in a flavor added to snacks, such as salt-and-vinegar. But even if salt gets little mention, it still makes a major contribution to the flavor. When used in combination with other flavorants, salt delivers a salty taste and modifies the overall flavor perception" (Food Product Design). Learn more...
  • Reducing Sodium, Mantaining Flavor and Functionality - Excess sodium in the daily diet contributes significantly to high blood pressure, which affects nearly 75 million people aged 20 or older, according to FDA. Learn how to reduce in your formulation without affecting the flavor and functionality of food significantly. Read on...
  • Making Cakes Worth Their Salt - The baking industry's challenge is to reduce sodium content while maintaining volume, texture, crumb structure and flavour profile. John Brodie shows how targeting leavening agents can successfully replace sodium content — while also boosting calcium levels appreciably. Read on...
  • Salt by the Sea - Today, there are hundreds, maybe thousands, of varieties of salt, with some 14,000 known uses. Food-grade salt use accounts for as little as 5%, according to the Salt Institute. The largest markets are for highway salt and water conditioning. Learn more...
  • Worth Its Salt - "For many food products, salt is indispensable. Imagine the flat flavor of a dill pickle, a cured ham or a potato chip without salt. Try to effectively and economically make an emulsified meat product or a crispy cracker if salt goes missing. While excessive use and subsequent excessive intake have painted this ingredient as nutrition's foe - more about that later - most food technologists consider it a good formulating friend" (Food Product Design). Learn more...
  • Sodium Shake Out - "The National Heart Lung and Blood Institute, America Heart Association, and the 2005 U.S. Dietary Guidelines for Americans all recommend that healthy people consume no more than 2,300 mg of salt (about 1 teaspoon) per day. Groups at particular risk, such as African Americans, the middle-aged and elderly, and those with high blood pressure, should pare back even more, to fewer than 1,500 mg" (Food Product Design). Learn more...
  • Flavorful Approaches to Slashing Sodium -- “The increasing level of sodium in Americans’ diets continues to be a growing concern to many. High dietary sodium levels may lead to increased risk of heart attack, heart disease and stroke. How can we mitigate this risk? For many, the answer is simple: reduce our sodium intake—specifically to less than 2,300 mg per day for the average person, according to the USDA’s most-recent Dietary Guidelines for Americans”
  • A Watched Pot : Soups Go Low-Sodium -- “In early 2010, The Campbell Soup Company announced to great fanfare that it would lower the sodium content across more than half of its condensed canned soup line by as much as 45%—in some cases dropping totals from an eye-popping 800 mg of sodium per serving to a relatively modest 480 mg. The initiative earned widespread praise from constituencies ranging from public health advocates and government officials to members of the medical community”
  • Un-Salting the Salty Snack -- "One of the pleasures of salty snacks is the actual taste of salt. In fact, many of us crave salt, which is no surprise, as the human body needs relatively large amounts of sodium, one of the two molecules that make up table salt, also known as sodium chloride.. But many nutrition authorities believe that most Americans consume too much sodium, with excessive consumption recognized as a contributing factor to hypertension, heart disease and perhaps even certain cancers". Learn more...
  • Strategies to Reduce Sodium Intake in the United States -- This is an audio podcast. You may also download the podcast (as an MP3 file) to your computer, MP3 player, iPod or smartphone.

video-icon.jpgVideo on Demand - These are collection of recorded presentation on Prepared Foods website; the presentation is given by industry application specialist on the subject of
salt in food
. This is the opportunity to listen to the experienced industry people because we cannot invite them to USM (no budget!). Feel free to listen to any of the presentation. Some of the presentations can be downloaded using Real Player (download the free version). You can even convert it to 3GP format so that you can view it on your handphone!! Hmm...how nice to learn nowadays...learn anywhere, anytime, even when lying on the bed! This is what we call now as mobile learning.

I suggest at least listen to a few presentations below (and the rest I hope you can explore at your convenience):