||Technology in Australia 1788-1988
Table of Contents
I Technology Transported; 1788-1840
II Technology Established; 1840-1940
i Meat Preserving: Heat Processing Introduced
ii Horticultural Products: Heat, Sugar and Solar Drying
iii Refrigeration and the Export of Meat
iv Milling and Baking
v Dairy Products
vii Sugar: Supplying an Ingredient
III The Coming Of Science
IV From Science To Technology: The Post-war Years
V Products And Processes
Technology Established; 1840-1940
This segment examines the establishment of a food processing industry in Australia and follows the introduction of specific technologies necessary to take advantage of the abundant raw materials deriving from Australia's agricultural development and, thus, to supply expanding local needs and build export markets in food. The period reviewed notionally ends in 1940 after which food technology became less empirical, less commodity oriented and more science based, but, because the last segment of this review changes emphasis from product technologies to the impact of this new thinking, it is convenient in some cases to run the account of certain technologies beyond 1940 virtually to the present.
By 1900 food technology was firmly established in Australia. Nobody called it that because it was seen as the introduction to and establishment in the colonies of food processing equipment and processes which, with one or two exceptions, had not been available to the original colonists. Thus, the technology of sugar milling and refining, though well known in the tropics, was not available in England, heat processing emerged only in the first decade of the nineteenth century from the work of Appert in the 1790s and refrigeration and the revolution in milling and dairy manufacture were later nineteenth century developments.
The last quarter of the nineteenth century was a period of great advance. Refrigerated transport, roller milling, cream separation and mechanical dehydration were introduced but they were all examples of engineering cleverness rather than the application of broadly based principles of food technology. At that time the application of chemistry and microbiology was only dimly perceived. It increased, especially between the wars, but it was not until the 1940s that the next great revolution occurred under the impact of the full scale application of science to problems of food production, processing and handling.
© 1988 Print Edition pages 76 - 77, Online Edition 2000
Published by Australian Science and Technology Heritage Centre, using the Web Academic Resource Publisher