In an industrial, largely urban society such as that of the United States, it is necessary that food be provided for large numbers of people distantly removed from the site of production. The provision of an abundant, wholesome, and economical food supply requires that the foodstuffs be produced efficiently; be processed, preserved, and stored so as to minimize wastage and loss of nutritive value; and be distributed to the consumer in a sanitary condition. That the foods be diversified, esthetically appealing, and convenient to use is perhaps of only slightly less importance.
Many technological developments have been applied to the task of furnishing our food supply; important among them is the use of chemicals. There has been some public concern about the number and kinds of chemicals that enter the food supply during its production, processing, and storage. In 1950, this led to an investigation of the use of chemicals
Johnson PE. CHEMICAL ADDITIVES. JAMA. 1956;162(6):572-573. doi:10.1001/jama.1956.72970230014011