Freezing and thawing of food stuff is often an important as well ass a critical process in the value chain of food processing companies. Especially freezing is often a major cost driver but both processes highly influence the product quality of the frozen or thawed product. Optimized blast freezing or shock-freezing can contribute to higher product quality and lower production costs.
Even though the food industry generally is highly effective, the processes of freezing and thawing often gets low attention. Often we meet situations or questions from end users which indicate a lack of focus to this important process.
Meat, Ice-crystalines and freezing-time
Fluctuating temperatures during the freezing process can also lead to the merger of ice-crystal. A fast and effective controlled freezing therefore not only influences the energy consumption in the freezing-process but also the defrosting process and the ”drip-loss” related hereto.
Blast- / shock-freezing
Factors influencing freezing time
Open profile freezer spacers™
As airflow will always chose the path with least resistance the cooled air must be ”forced” not only in-between the stacked layers of products but also in-between the pallets. Hence the location of the pallets in the blast freezing chamber and the use of open-profile freezer spacers™ in-between the stacked box-layers is of utmost importance for the total freezing efficiency.
The use of open profile freezer Spacers™ allow a high airflow is therefore one of the most profitable investments you can do in order to reduce energy costs, increase efficiency and improve product quality.
Freezer spacers are offered in a variety of designs and materials. The more open profiled a spacer is the more airflow is allowed through the spacer and as such the shorter the freezing time.
In short a reduced freezing time leads to;
- Reduced use of energy and as such cost savings
- Faster flow and as such better utilization of existing freezing facilities
- Increased product quality including reduced drip-losses.
During the years we have had several clients claiming that the investment in highly effective freezer spacers had reached break even within months.
Uniform and fast thawing is equally important
The tendency that ice-crystals merge to larger units is also seen during defrosting as various temperature fields arise when foodstuff thaws from the outside in. Consequently it is also here a big advantage if the defrosting can be as uniform and fast as possible, (not exceeding normal cold-storage-temperatures) Using freezer spacers to create an improved airflow in-between the thawing products therefor highly influences the product quality and drip-loss.