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Define rancidity.

Last updated date: 22nd Jul 2024
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Hint :We know that Rancidity in Chemistry, which is also called Rancidification, is a condition that is produced by the aerial oxidation of unsaturated fat present in foods and also other products that are marked by unpleasant flavours or odour.

Complete Step By Step Answer:
Rancidity refers solely to the oxidation of fats and oils that are usually present in food. The oxidation may be either complete or partial. Rancidification of foodstuffs causes an extremely unpleasant taste and odour. The oxidation of unsaturated fatty acids into aldehydes and ketones can cause rancidity; this is known as oxidative rancidity. Other types of rancidity are microbial rancidity, where fats are broken down using enzymes, and hydrolytic rancidity, where triglycerides are hydrolyzed to cause a foul odour. All these types lead to the food being inedible and will cause harm to our bodies. An example of rancidity is spoiling meat. Even if meat is immediately refrigerated, some of the poly-unsaturated fats will continue to degrade and become rancid. So, it is always better to consume meat as soon as it is bought.
A good example is Linseed oil (turned into rancid oil) because it can be used to harden oil-based paints (for example, artist’s ‘oil’ paints). And, the hardening reaction results from the polymer formation of these oxygenated fatty acids. It is also believed that walnut oil turns rancid rapidly. For this particular reason, polyunsaturated fatty acid oils should be stored in the refrigerator to slow down the reaction.

Note :
Remember that do not get confused between rancidity and corrosion, even though they both refer to spoiling and destruction of materials and substances, corrosion always refers to metals being destroyed due to oxidation and rancidity refers to fats being oxidized.