When food bulging is the topic, the first thing that come accross my mind is the deformed canned sardine. Deformation not cause by dropping or other strong external forces. Instead, the cause is from the inside.
Anaerobic microorganisms, for some reasons, start to grow. Feeding on protein rich media and giving off carbon dioxide. It accumulates and push the thin can wall farther away resulting in bulge appearance.
Bulged canned foods are dangerous. It became the rule of thumb to discard on sight.
Bulging foods also occur in packed crackers. The package is normally inflated with inert gas, protecting contents from external pressure and preventing the absorption of moisture resulting to thoughness. However there are times when the amount of gas inside is not normal. It is like a balloon that may pop anytime soon.
Same thing with instant juice drink in doy pouches. It looks like overfilled but in reality, it is not fit for the taking.
The next thing I saw puzzled me a little. Why would this instant gulaman powder go bulge. There was nothing in there but seaweed extract. I thought of it for a while. Then inspected the label. I saw sugar.
So what is the deal with sugar being in there?
If it so happen the product is contaminated with yeast and other conditions are met, fermentation may occur, producing some carbon dioxide in the process. Amount enough to make package appearance abnormal.
I opened it up and surprised. The gulaman powder appearance and aroma are perfectly normal. For a moment I thought it was fine and wanna cook delectable gelatine. However, the rule of thumb is discard any bulging food items. A pack of suspicious instant gulaman is not worth risking for.
Marvin is the lead chocolate maker of Ben and Lyn Chocolate Inc. Has strong background in food research and development. Occasionally conducts training and lectures. Lecturer of Cocoa Foundation of the Philippines. Do coaching and consultancy services on his free time.