Unsurprisingly, there is no uniform and precise definition or criteria of what industrialized & processed foods are. The ambiguity mainly serves the food industry.
Food that meets one or more of the following criteria may be considered processed or industrialized food. (Rank is a separate exam)
- After undergoing a deep freeze, raw or ready-to-eat food, baking, frying, steaming, or other heating over high heat.
- The primary test is the degree of damage caused to each product's nutrients individually, during freezing, cooling, or heating to high heat. We are taking into account the shelf life of the product.
- Food and beverages in their final serving form, containing substances that are not wholly natural, such as artificial sweeteners, artificial emulsifiers, solidified vegetable oils, trans fats, artificial flavors, colorants, preservatives, and more.
- Animal, and plant nutrients, grown under conditions that are not their optimal conditions in nature. Such as:
- Animal foods that have received growth hormones, antibiotics, foods that target unnatural obesity, for the specific animal. Various unneeded chemicals.
- Plant foods are grown under conditions that impair product quality. Such as food that has undergone chemical spraying, or harmful biological treatment, growing produce in untreated wastewater, growing in poor soil is not suitable for the specific crop.
- Food packed in tin cans (leaking), smoked food. (Smoking may contain unhealthy chemicals)
Under the strict definitions I have presented - most of the foods we eat are processed and industrialized to one degree or another. Unfortunately, this is indeed the reality, but at the moment, in the absence of objective indicators, it isn't easy to quantify these essential indicators.