Folks -- have we established that I can call you folks? This week, I felt compelled to move away from category-specific research and trends and focus on an event I attended on Wednesday Aug. 14. It's called the R&D Applications Seminar, and if you aren't aware of it, I think you should take a moment to familiarize yourself.

Product developers as you are, this seminar is tailored to your interests. Is that an effective sentence structure? No? Well, how does this grab you? At the R&D Applications Seminar, you get to learn in classrooms and play in labs. You learn about new products, or products new to you, and then you get to engage in hands-on exploration in a lab. Here's this powder, here's a gum, here's a solution. Now, discover its properties by fooling around with it in a lab. 

Holy my! It was fun everybody. Real fun. Soon we'll have a few video testimonials on the Prepared Foods website so that you can hear first-hand from other food scientist concerning their experience at the R&D Applications Seminar. 

It's difficult to get away these days and consort with your peers, but I believe that the people that attended this year's event in Chicago gained knowledge and interest in new products and ideas that will assist them in product development in the next 12 months.

Honestly. Earnestly. Like totally, bros, as the lanky teen-ager who lives down the street from me might say. I'm embarrassed to include his turn of phrase in this forum, but I cannot deny that it fits my message in this instance.

Next year! You must go! 
Fear not! I will bring the 2014 event to your attention as an agenda takes shape.

And now, well, your weekly reduction is a mere link to the R&D Applications Seminar website. Learn about it.

Oh, who am I kidding. 
Here are a couple of videos about gums.

Uniqueness of Modified Wheat Starch: Improved Flavor and Salt Perception, and Fiber Enhancement

Cellulosic Hydrocolloids in Formulating for Weight Management