Tackling the obesity challenge with novel low-fat food products

There is no simple solution to the obesity crisis, but what you eat can make a real difference.

Multinational food companies have used research at the University of Birmingham’s chemical engineering department to develop new ranges of low-fat foods that are both highly profitable and are helping to tackle obesity.

low fat foods

The key to success has been in the microstructure engineering of soft solids to create foods such as spreads, cheese and mayonnaise that are low in fat but which retain the texture and taste expected by consumers.

Food giants Unilever, Kraft, PepsiCo and Cargill have used Birmingham’s breakthrough work to develop and market a greatly expanded range of products. This has generated significant sales and profits in the multi-billion pound food sector, both in the UK and the US.

Household brands such as Flora, Hellman’s and Walkers all use the new technology, which has also helped to make the manufacturing process more efficient. As well as applying research that has been carried out already, industry partners have continued to invest in this research area, showing the value placed on this basic research by businesses.


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