Food chemistry and Nutritional Chemistry
Food chemistry is the study of the chemical composition, processes and interactions of all biological and non-biological components of foods. It includes macro- and micronutrients, and the essential nutritional factors that determine the nutritional and energy value of food raw materials and foods. It also includes reactions related to amino acids, peptides and proteins, fats and other lipids, carbohydrates, vitamins, mineral substances and water which are responsible for odour, taste and colour that determine the quality of food materials and foods. Agricultural chemistry must be considered within the context of the soil ecosystem in which living and non-living components interact in complicated cycles that are critical to all living things. Carbon inputs from photosynthetic organisms ultimately provide the fuel for many soil organisms to grow and reproduce. Soil organisms, in turn, promote organic carbon degradation and catalyze the release of nutrients required for plant growth. The stability and productivity of agricultural ecosystems rely on efficient functioning of these and other processes, whereby carbon and nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorus are recycled. Human-induced perturbations to the system, such as those that occur with pesticide or fertilizer application, alter ecosystem processes, sometimes with negative environmental consequences.