Modern and traditional food processing methods can be used in the processing of food products from the farms. Traditional food processing method is still common in most areas where skilled craftsmen are used in the processing of food products through a method known as artisanal food processing. Cheese, bread, cured meat, preserved fruits, oils, beverages and vinegar are some of the food that are made by craftsmen by the use of hands. Locally produced raw materials which include food produced locally are used in the processing of artisan foods. Processing of locally produced foods creates market for the producers’ goods and also helps in improving the economy of the local area. Highly perishable goods such as fruits are well preserved increasing their shelf life by using the simple techniques of food processing and fermentation. Fermentation makes use of beneficial microorganism in producing products that are useful to consumers such as vinegar and wine.
Artisan foods produced are usually produced over a long period of time since the processes of making the food are depending on the hands activity of the craftsmen giving the food products enough time to mature. This makes the artisan foods to have a high nutrition value hence healthy for human consumption. Most artisan foods are produced just enough for the people living in the given area without any surplus to export to other areas. Farmers markets are the main distribution sites for the artisan foods in a given area. There are other places that have supermarkets and fast food joints that are able to sell artisan food to consumers.
Legislations as well as food processing safety precautions should be looked into when processing artisan foods to ensure safe consumption of foods. Ensuring food safety for human consumption requires the craftsmen involved in the food processing to maintain personal hygiene. This helps in reducing contamination of food products such as washing hands, reducing food contact with bare hands, having protective clothing and ensuring general personal cleanliness. Working environment cleanliness is very important during food processing since it helps keep away disease-causing vectors that are likely to compromise the health quality of the artisan food. Proper waste management helps in ensuring that the food processing is safe from any disease-causing organisms.
Most consumers prefer artisan foods in the farmers market since they are not genetically modified and therefore they have their flavors not altered. Most artisanal foods are peaked locally from farms where production is mostly organic hence they have their flavors and also safe from pesticide residues. Artisan foods are very good in promoting the economic growth of local communities by ensuring that producers make income from their produces.