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ARTICLE

Food function and structure – introduction

We all eat food because it provides the fundamental types of materials required to keep our bodies functioning. These materials can be categorised as: macronutrients – carbohydrates, proteins ...

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Food’s journey through the digestive system

A look at the time it takes for food to pass through the gut from mouth to anus. In a healthy adult, transit time is about 24–72 hours. Read the article The human digestive system for further ...

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Macronutrients

Nutrients are substances needed for growth, energy provision and other body functions. Macronutrients are those nutrients required in large amounts that provide the energy needed to maintain body ...

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Fruit enzyme uses

Enzymes extracted from fruits like papaya, pineapple, kiwifruit and fig have uses as medicines, food-processing agents and dietary supplements. Fruits contain enzymes Fruits like papaya ...

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Creating different cheese characteristics

Cheese comes in numerous varieties of different styles, textures and flavours, but it’s all made from the same basic ingredient – milk. So what are the differences and how are they created ...

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Unlocking the energy in foods

The foods we eat supply the energy needed by the body to drive its complex chemical, mechanical and electrical systems. Where does this energy come from, how is it locked into food molecules and ...

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The science of cheese

Cheesemaking is the controlled process of removing water from milk. This process concentrates the milk’s protein, fat and other nutrients and increases its shelf life. Cheesemaking is one of the ...

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Breeding a new apple cultivar

Breeding a new apple cultivar takes a long time and involves many steps. The aim is to produce high-quality fruit that consumers will like and want to buy. Breeding apples to increase quality The ...

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The science of tea

All tea is made from the leaves of the tea plant, Camellia sinensis. Six main types of tea are produced – white, yellow, green, oolong, black and post-fermented. Each type of tea has a unique ...

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Breeding red-fleshed apples – introduction

Find out how and why a red-fleshed apple variety is being bred in New Zealand, and discover how genetic information, consumer research and sensory science are all involved. Red-fleshed apples – ...

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Sensing food

An instant impression is made with the first bite of a new food or taste of drink. Sensory analysis takes us past this first response, examining how the food’s properties stimulate each of our ...

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Economic impacts of GM crops

Can farmers make a profit from growing genetically modified (GM) food crops? Economic modelling can be used to weigh up different factors that influence the profits that can be gained from ...

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Genes and lactose intolerance

In New Zealand, we drink a lot of milk, so you might be surprised to learn that most adults in the world are lactose intolerant and can’t consume dairy products. Inheriting lactose intolerance ...

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Phytochemicals

Phytochemicals are naturally occurring, biologically active chemical compounds in plants. The prefix ‘phyto’ is from a Greek word meaning plant. The presence of certain types of phytochemicals in ...

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A genetic test for lactose intolerance

A genetic test for lactose intolerance has been devised by researchers at the Canterbury Health Laboratories in Christchurch. Lactose intolerance is common Most of the world’s population (about ...

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Uses of whey

Whey has gone from being a waste product from cheesemaking to a highly valued coproduct. Whey is now widely used in the food industry for its nutritional and functional benefits. What is whey?   ...

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Taewa (Māori potatoes) – introduction

Taewa are traditional potato varieties grown by early Māori settlers in New Zealand. Find out how researchers are now developing unique food products from taewa. Taewa were introduced to New ...

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Manufacturing Gouda cheese

Gouda is a semi-hard Dutch cheese. A Hamilton-based artisan cheese factory makes traditional Gouda using milk directly from the adjoining farm. Discover how each step in the manufacturing process ...

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Dietary fibre

Dietary fibre is the portion of fruits, vegetables, nuts and grains we eat that is resistant to digestion and absorption in the small intestine. However, bacteria that live in the large intestine ...

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Kiwifruit – learning to live with Psa

In November 2010, the bacterium Pseudomonas syringae pv. Actinidiae (Psa) was discovered in a Te Puke kiwifruit orchard. Psa had previously decimated kiwifruit crops in other parts of the world ...

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The chemistry of croissants

Breads and pastries that you make at home never taste the same as the ones you buy from a shop. This is because a whole range of additional ingredients are usually added to commercial products to ...

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Why breed a red-fleshed apple?

A new apple cultivar with red skin and red flesh is being developed at Plant & Food Research. Discover how the idea came about and why it may appeal to consumers. Plant & Food Research ...

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