What’s in your food? A new research effort intends to find out

“Humans eat more than 30,000 species of plants and animals. But for the most part we don’t know much about what is in them. Researchers have thoroughly analyzed the molecular components of only a few hundred of the most common foods, leaving a vast gap in our knowledge of nutrition.

This week, food scientists and activists met here to launch a new database that aims to close that gap. The database, part of a project called the Periodic Table of Food Initiative (PTFI), spearheaded by the Rockefeller Foundation, aims to document the vast array of biomolecules found in food, with a long-term goal of aiding efforts to improve agriculture, nutrition, and health.”

Researchers are moving to document the many compounds found in food crops, such as this red quinoa grown in China.

Other Stories

Tarini Naravane, fellow at Bluestein Ventures
Food Ingredients UCD sustainability
Chief Marcelino Apurina, of the Aldeia Novo Paraiso in the Western Amazon region of Brazil, near Labrea holds a Babacu fruit and ranitidine hydrochloride tablets, both used to treat gastric problems in traditional and modern medicine respectively. (Photo by CARL DE SOUZA/AFP via Getty Images)AFP VIA GETTY IMAGES