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Components


 Updated 2015-08-15

 Components in Food Composition Databases

The components in food composition databases are the descriptors (identifiers) that are used to identify the chemical sustances, compounds or physico-chemical properties to which the reported values relate.
The components are typically defined with a more or less complete description and are typically held in a simple list or in a more complex thesaurus (or ontology) in a database or printed form.

The list or thesaurus entry normally includes the descriptor and its corresponding component name, a scope note to define usage of the term and additional information.

A few typical examples of these lists or thesauri ("systems") are in non-prioritised order

Several of the listed examples cross-link to other component lists, e.g. ChEBI links to CAS Numbers and IUPAC names, the EuroFIR Thesaurus link to ChEBI identifiers and INFOODS food component identifiers, etc.

Although there is an ongoing discussion of which system is best or to use, it is evident the use of a "system" must match its purpose. As the different "systems" are constructed for specific and/or different purposes, the food composition data compiler is often in the situation that there is a need for applying several of the systems in parallel. This is especially the cases when the food composition database contains information from several different component groups, e.g. nutrient, heavy metals, pesticides, food additives, etc., which is most likely the case in modern laboratory information management systems (LIMS).

The typical component thesaurus is organised into a hierarchy that uses group headings that are not used to identify components for individual compositional values. A term or group heading may be linked to more than one parent term in the hierarchy (a poly-hierarchy), e.g. L-Ascorbic acid can be both a naturally occuring nutient (vitamin) and a food additive (antioxidant).

A component thesaurus also includes descriptors for measurable properties such as density, pH, edible proportion, etc. so that their values can also be reported using the Value entity.



 News
UK Composition of Foods online

2019-05-23
Food Databanks National Capability extended dataset based on PHE’s McCance and Widdowson’s Composition of Foods Integrated Dataset.
 
Composition of foods integrated dataset (CoFID) 2019

2019-05-22
McCance and Widdowson’s 'composition of foods integrated dataset' on the nutrient content of the UK food supply. Available from Public Health England's website.
 
OCEANIAFOODS - Smarter Data 2019

2019-05-16
SMARTER DATA 2019: Food Composition Information in this Digital Age takes place 3 - 4 September 2019 at Rydges Hotel, Auckland, New Zealand.
For more information, see the conference website.
 
IFDC 2019 in Lisbon 14-18 October 2019

2019-04-02
The 13th International Food Data Conference (IFDC 2019) will take place in Lisbon, Portugal, between the 14th and 18th of October 2019. For more information, see the conference website.