Food processing, food preservation, food production and food manufacturing are all interrelated terms that refer to the processes used to turn raw agricultural products – and in some cases products harvested from the wild – into consumable foods. These processes are used to make foods safer and more palatable to human consumers. Although food processing is often done in industrial settings, individuals use a variety of at-home food processing methods as well. One example of at-home food processing is cutting, deboning and cooking a fish after it has been caught.
Kisan Food processing takes many different forms. Some foods require little or no processing, like an apple that can be picked from the tree and eaten immediately. Others are inedible unless they undergo some type of processing.
Kisan Food processing methods fall into three categories:
Primary food processing is the process of turning raw agricultural products into foods that can be consumed. In some cases, the food is ready to be consumed once primary processing is finished. An example of this is jerky made from smoked meat. In other cases, primary processing turns the agricultural product into an ingredient that can then be made into a consumable food, such as milling grain to create flour.
Secondary food processing is the process of using ingredients produced through primary food processing to create ready-to-eat foods. An example of this is using flour to make dough and then baking the dough to create bread. Other examples include fermenting grape juice with wine yeast to create wine and using ground meat to make sausages.
Tertiary food processing is the large-scale manufacturing of ready-to-eat foods, like frozen pizzas and packaged snacks. The term “processed food” typically refers to food products manufactured through tertiary food processing.
Some foods require multiple types of processing to reach their final, consumable forms. For example, tortilla chips. Corn is grown, then harvested and nixtamalized – the process of soaking it in an alkaline solution – before being made into dough. Then, the dough is used to create tortillas, which are then cut and either baked or fried into chips. When this process is done at an industrial scale and sealed in airtight bags, it includes tertiary food processing methods after the food has gone through primary and secondary processing.