Food is one of the most essential needs of all living things. With today's growing population and increased appetite for different culinary preferences, food industries are producing an infinite number of ready-to-eat meals. However, if food is stored for an extended period, it can lose its consistency and become unfit to eat. For storing food and maintaining its quality for a long time, it is necessary to concentrate more on food preservation.

Spices and herbs have grown in popularity as possible sources of natural food preservatives in recent years, owing to an increasing interest in the production of healthy and reliable food preservation methods. 

Importance of Spices for Food Preservation

Spices are one of the main kitchen ingredients that are found in abundance in Indian household. These spices are used in various different types of food preservations. 

When compared to every other scientific technique for food preservation, the use of basic spices is extremely advantageous and effective. Though spices are mostly used for flavouring and colouring food, they are also used for food preservation. 

Most people are unaware of this unbelievable and simple method of food preservation. While current technology allows for simple techniques of preserving food such as pasteurisation, freezing, and drying, it does not guarantee the consistency or nutritional value of the food. On the other hand, spices are loaded with health benefits. 

People are getting more health-conscious, and they want natural food preservation techniques. Despite multiple studies proving the potential applications of different spices, only a few are seen on the market. Acidulants like vinegar alcohol are also used for food safety. 

Canning, drying, freezing, smoking, salting, pickling, and curing are some of the most popular and widely used food preservation techniques. The fundamental goal of all these approaches is to keep microorganisms out of food. If the food is to be kept for a lengthier period, there are vacuum packed so that none of the microorganism can enter those sealed bags. 


Spices Used for Food Preservation

• Salt:

Food storage with salt has been around for millennia, even before humans invented refrigeration. It is used to preserve meats, seafood, and vegetables. Salting draws moisture from the food being preserved. Since moisture acts as a breeding ground for bacteria, salting inhibits bacterial growth. Previously, salt storage encouraged people to eat during periods of scarcity, such as winter or drought. 

• Black Pepper:

Black pepper has antimicrobial, antifungal, and prebiotic properties, making it an excellent seasoning to use in the preservation of foods. Black pepper is widely used in the preservation of jams, pickles, preserves, and candies. Pickles should be made with whole peppercorns, while preserves and jams should be made with ground black pepper. When the preservation seal is removed, this will prolong the shelf life of your food by up to one month.

• Cumin:

Cumin, like salt, has been used for decades as a food preservative. Cumin, a member of the parsley family, is a tiny seed known as the Spice of the Ancients. It contains anti-inflammatory and antioxidant components that aid in the preservation of food. Cumin, like honey, was used in the mummification process by the ancient Egyptians.

• Mustard Seeds:

When hot spices like mustard are added to dishes, they love to fend off toxic bacteria that can spoil the food. Previously, mustard seed waste was regarded as a low-value waste object and was discarded immediately. The researchers proposed that using this waste as a food preservative will be beneficial. The antibacterial effects on food preservation were found to be beneficial, and mustard seed was discovered to help in food preservation.

• Ginger:

Ginger is a spice that soothes unsettled stomachs, prevents the flu, and increases saliva production. Moreover, it's also an excellent food preservative. This incredible spice has both antimicrobial and anticarcinogenic properties, and these properties help preserved foods last longer. 

There are many advantages of using spices instead of chemical ingredients in food preservation. Using these spices would ensure the food lasts as long as humanly possible for the home cook who needs to guarantee their food lasts as long as possible. 

However, to ensure food preservation, you have to use spices that are unadulterated and fresh. The spices from Vasant Masala are fresh and pure so that you can integrate them into your dishes without worrying about your health.