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Nanotechnology for herbal diet drinks

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As a major food producer and exporter, new food industry technologies are an essential part of proactive government policy. 

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BEVERAGES: Tipco turns to nanotechnology by Nanchanok Wongsamuth


Nanotechnology, associated mainly with apparel and cosmetics, has found a new application in herbal drinks developed by a subsidiary of the fruit juice producer Tipco Foods (Thailand).

AnanChaikitwattana, Tipco Biotech’s project manager for research and development, believes nanotechnology in food products is the coming wave. The Tipco Foods subsidiary is now using it to develop herbal beverageshots’ that taste good and have export potential.

Nanofoods are foods that have been altered at the molecular level by nanotechnology to enhance certain properties. For example, by hiding water inside oil droplets, taste can be enhanced, making diet foods seem like a full-calorie product.

Beverage "shots" with botanical extracts currently under development by Tipco Biotech consist of substances extracted from four plants: curcuma, mangosteen, chili and roselle.

They are in 'shots' because we want a large concentration of herbs to maximise their benefits. Also, small particles make absorption more effective," said Anan Chaikitwattana, Tipco Biotech's project manager for research and development.

Herbal beverage shots usually have problems, such as bad taste and unstable colour. I think [nanotechnology] is necessary for the herbal industry to solve these issues.

Functional food makes up around 5-10% of Tipco's total products but is set to increase in the future.

The 13.94-million-baht project is the first nanofood venture to be supported by the government's National Innovation Agency (NIA), which has contributed to the development of pilot machinery for the production of nano-particles.

The current phase is expected to be finished by the third quarter, and the company will export the shots to Asean to exploit the 600-million-consumer market as the Asean Economic Community takes shape in 2015.

NIA director Supachai Lorlowhakarn said the trend in Thailand was to utilise nanotechnology to merge the food and medicine industries.

"It's unavoidable that meals will some day be like taking medicine," he said.

People aged 60-90 now have higher purchasing power and will be the target group in Thailand for the shots, said Dr Supachai.

Clean and green industries are the NIA's two long-term strategies.

"By clean industry, we're talking not only about clean energy, but also a safety process that avoids contamination," he said.

The drive will include food safety total solution businesses, under which Thailand would certify safety procedures, much like ISO designations.

Dr Supachai believes Thailand has a bright future in the nanofood industry but must develop "nutraceutical" foods with food and medical sectors involved, and this requires nanotechnology.

(Source: Bangkok Post, BEVERAGES, Tipco turns to nanotechnology, 6/05/2011, Nanchanok Wongsamuth, link


Biotechnology Vocabulary

beverage - a drink of any type เครื่องดื่ม (See Wikipedia)

nanotechnology -  the study of the controlling of matter on an atomic and molecular scale. Generally nanotechnology deals with structures of the size 100 nanometers or smaller in at least one dimension, and involves developing materials or devices within that size (See Wikipedia)
nanotech - same as "nanotechnology"
nano-particles - very small particles of size 100 nanometers or smaller, the size used in nanotechnology 

herb
(noun) - สมุนไพร (See Wikipedia)
herbal
(adjective) 
shot -
a small amount of a strong alcoholic drink
herbal beverage shot - a small drink with a lot of herbs in it (no alcohol, only the idea of a small drink that is drunk quickly is borrowed)

cosmetics - things such as lipstick and mascara that women (and ladyboys) put on their face to look more beautiful เครื่องสำอางค์  (See Wikipedia)

research and development -
the part of a company that searches and develops new ideas for the company's future products

molecule (noun) - the small parts used to build substances (example: a water molecule)
molecular (adjective)
enhance - to improve the quality, amount or strength of something ทำให้ดีเพิ่มขึ้น, ปรับปรุง

drop - a very small amount of a liquid such as water shaped like a little ball
droplet - a very small drop of a liquid

diet food - special food that people eat to lose weight (See Wikipedia)

calorie -
food energy, a unit used to measure the energy value of food, people on diets usually try to eat a low amount of calories (See Wikipedia)
full-calorie product - the product with all the calories in it
reduced-calorie product -
a product with a lower number of calories for people on a diet (the product they are developing, the opposite of the full-calorie product)

botanical - relating to plants or to the scientific study of plants เกี่ยวกับพฤกษศาสตร์
extract X from Y (verb) - take X out of Y
an extract  (noun) - a substance that has been obtained from (or taken out of) another substance (using a chemical process)
botanical extract - plant extract, a substance or chemicals derived from plants (phytochemicals)
phytochemicals - chemicals in plants, that can be extracted from plants (See Wikipedia)
phytochemistry - the study of chemicals in plants and how to extract them (See Wikipedia)

biotechnology -
 the use of living organisms or biological techniques to provide chemicals such as drugs, foods and other products that meet human needs (See Wikipedia)
biotech
- same as "biotechnology"

consist - to be made of or formed from something ประกอบด้วย

curcuma -
a group (genus) of 80 plants including Turmeric (that has medicinal benefits) and Siam Tulip (ปทุมา, ดอกกระเจียว) (See Wikipedia)
roselle - a plant that is a species of Hibiscus, used in tea and beverages, also likely to have value in lowering blood  pressure as a herbal medicine (See Wikipedia)

concentration - a large amount in a small area, a lot of something in one place แหล่งชุมนุม หรือ ศูนย์รวม
benefits - goods things that can happen from anm activity ผลประโยชน์
absorption - the process of nutrients passing into the blood after they have been broken down in the stomach and small intestine (See Wikipedia)
effective - works well, gets the job done, producing the result that was intended ได้ผลดี

unstable - can change suddenly in unpredictable ways (no one knows what will happen next), likely to change or move instead of staying the same ไม่มั่นคง, ไม่สม่ำเสมอ

functional food - medicinal food, food that is health-promoting or disease-preventing, that provides additional health benefits beyond the usual energy and essential nutrients (for example, yogurt promotes beneficial microflora in the gut; chocolate, inulin/oligofructose, nuts, berries and soy all may also have such properties), one example of such foods are probiotics which can restore bacteria to the intestines that has been lost from antibiotics or surgery (See Wikipedia)
nanofood - food made using nanotechnology  
nutraceutical - (= nutrition + pharmaceutical) a food that provides health benefits and/or cures diseases (See Wikipedia)

pilot - a small test of a new idea or product or idea before introducing it everywhere

trend - a new development in clothing, make-up, etc แนวโน้ม
process - a series of actions that you take in order to achieve a result แนวทางปฏิบัติ, กระบวน, วิธีการ
contamination - made dirty and dangerous to use or eat after exposure to dirt, germs, chemicals, or radiation

National Innovation Agency (NIA) - government agency established in 2003 to improve national competitiveness and productivity through education, technology, business investment and financing (See website)

certify - officially state that something it true ออกใบรับรอง
ISO - International Standards Organization, an organization that compiles standards to be used throughout the world (See Wikipedia)
designations -
a description, name or title given to something
ISO designations - the descriptions of what meets standards in ISO standards documents

General Vocabulary

proactive -
action that seeks to solve problems, even before they happen (thinking ahead and anticipating problems, rather than merely reacting to problems)

apparel - clothes
subsidiary - (of a business company) owned or controlled by another company บริษัทในเครือ a smaller company that is owned by a larger company บริษัทลูก
producer - a company that makes (manufactures, produces) some good ผู้ผลิต

wave
- a popular thiing, a trend, something that is very popular for a limited time (like a wave which reaches a height, then the wave breaks, and disappears)
the coming wave - the next popular thing

potential - the possibility of success ที่มีศักยภาพ ที่เป็นไปได้
export potential - the possibility that a good might become a successful export good

altered - changed
issues - an important subect that people are discussing and debating about, subjects that need to be considered ประเด็น
venture - a new activity, usually in business, which involves risk or uncertainty ธุริกิจเสี่ยงแต่สามารถทำกำไรได้

current - of the present time ปัจจุบัน
expected - believe will happen คาดว่า (จะเกิดขึ้น)
third quarter - the time period of the 7th, 8th, and 9th months of the business year, used for budgeting and financial reporting in companies, government and other organizations
exploit - take advantage of an opportunity for gain and profit
consumer - someone who buys and uses goods and services ผู้บริโภค
merge - (of two or more groups) to join together to become one การรวมกัน
unavoidable - impossible to stop from happening หลีกเลี่ยงไม่ได้, อย่างเลี่ยงไม่ได้

higher purchasing power - have more money to buy things
target group - the group of customers that a company is trying to sell its products to
strategies - long-term plans to achieve goals in the future, for success in competition กลยุทธ, นโยบาย

drive
- a planned effort to achieve something การผลักดัน,ความพยายาม

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