Chennai: Good news for parents. Noodles, chocolates and ice cream are now good for kids. Food scientists associated with College of Food and Dairy Technology (CFDT) in Chennai are now working on junk foods, such as noodles and chocolates to improve their nutrient value with high protein and reduce artificial flavours.
“Under the project funded by union government, chocolates that roll out from CFDT campus will have algae oil and coconut oil. Also, the noodle we are working on will have lactose extracted from skimmed milk. This will be baseline diet for growing children,” said professor D. Baskaran, dean, College of Food and Dairy Technology, Koduvalli.
The college recently obtained a project entitled ‘I’ — STED — Diffusion of Novel Food Technologies for generation of healthy India with a financial outlay of Rs 275.60 lakh funded by Department of Science and Technology.
Under the project, the institute will target junk food preferred by children and modify its ingredient pattern and nutrient value making it a healthy food for them.
“The faculty is working on milk protein, fibre enriched noodles, designer healthy chocolate prototypes, millet mixed ice cream and fermented beverages in our plant installed at the college and the products are expected within three months,” said Baskaran.
Raw materials required for the enrichment are sourced from food process of products like skimmed milk and plant pseudostem for fibre enrichment in diet.
The nutrients are delivered to consumers in different food varieties, so as to target the sites of absorption for complete utilisation of minerals and vitamins in a human system.
This effort will help alleviate protein deprivation and malnutrition in young growing children, Baskaran added.
To propagate the project, the college plans to organize a national conference and workshop entitled “Making Indian Food Clean and Safe” to be held on December 15-16, 2016 at Tamil Nadu Veterinary and Animal Sciences University.
Food safety officers and food experts are expected to attend the conference to discuss the growing imbalance in diet and the toxic levels in food chain.
Welcoming the initiative, Chennai Food Safety Officer Dr N. Kathiravan said awareness on food safety among Chennaiites has increased in the recent days.
Dr Dharani Krishnan, a Chennai-based consultant dietician, added that 2 to 3 grams of protein per serving in a chocolate will be ideal for kids.