Sun, Dec 4, 2016 | updated 11:57 PM IST

CFTRI showcases a range of superfoods at the Trade Fair

Updated: Nov 27, 2016 16:17 IST

New Delhi [India], Nov 27 (ANI): CSIR-Central Food Technological Research Institute (CFTRI), the premier national institute for food technology is exhibiting a range of new agri-products now grown in India, called Superfoods that bring health and nutrition best practices to everyday eating and living to the common man.

The exhibits by CFTRI at the Trade Fair at Pragati Maidan in New Delhi both impress and surprise with the range and scope of their utility and potency.

The Indian population is presently going through a nutrition transition and there is an increase in incidence of diabetes, impaired heart health and obesity while there is still rampant malnutrition in the nation.

Keeping in mind an effective solution needed to address these concerns, CSIR-CFTRI is working on bringing Superfoods to the Indian population.

It works on various facets of food technology, food processing, advanced nutrition, Superfoods and allied sciences.

CFTRI has developed the agro-technology for growing Superfoods such as Chia and Quinoa in Indian conditions.

Chia is the richest source of omega-III fats from a vegetarian source and Quinoa has excellent protein quality and low glycemic load carbohydrates.

Comprehensively, Chia and Quinoa have potential to improve population health and both blend seamlessly into traditional food preparations.

CSIR-CFTRI also infuses the spirit of entrepreneurship in their students. One of the doctoral students after completing her academic program started her own technology provider start-up company, Oleome Biosolutions Pvt Ltd. In a global first, CSIR-CFTRI in collaboration with Oleome, has developed a 100 percent vegetarian, Omega-III-enriched Ice cream called "Nutriice" using Chia oil.

CSIR-CFTRI is also in the process of the final phase of testing of diacylglycerol (DAG) oil, a unique cooking oil that has "Anti-Obesity" functionalities. One can consume it as part of daily regular diet and while the oil is available as energy but does not get stored as fat in our bodies. The final phase of human clinical trial is presently under progress.

CFTRI has also designed and developed snacks with advanced nutrition designs to support the nutrition needs of growing children. These have been implemented in the aganwadi levels to complement the existing government mid-day meal and will be scaled up soon. The products, such as Nutri Chikki with spirulina, rice beverage mix, high protein rusk, energy food, nutri sprinkle, sesame paste and fortified mango bars have been well received by the children and the anganwadi's alike. Multi-grain Banana bar is a new addition to in this product portfolio.

Another exciting area of multidisciplinary research being done at CSIR-CFTRI is on nanotechnology, food technology and nutrition. Nano materials are known for their characteristic properties and CSIR-CFTRI is working on the use of nano-particles for various applications. One of our interesting developments is the design and development of food packaging material with nano-particles with antimicrobial and antioxidant properties to improve shelf-life of processed foods.

CSIR-CFTRI is also working on "Smart Foods" to answer specific needs of the consumer. These promising and specifically designed innovations are being developed for better sleep, better skin health, improved digestion, better cognitive performance and better stress management. The high science is brought into a simple food product, like a cereal bar which helps one to be more attentive over the day, or a unique dosa mix that helps in working out better at the gym with lower perceived exhaustion and even a special soup to help sleep better at night!

"Our mandate is to find innovative solutions to India agricultural and nutritional challenges. Our aim is to develop products to make Indian agriculture productive, efficient and at a consumer level gradually replace drugs with foods that will promote better health and wellness. We strive to deliver our best in improving food security and nutrition security, also developing a stronger, smarter and healthier India," said Director CFTRI, Prof. Ram Rajasekharan. (ANI)