Freeze-drying is a process that allows food to be shelf stable while retaining the maximum amount of nutrients. Freeze dried foods retain their original color, form, size, taste and texture. Whether eaten every day or saved for the future, THRIVE Freeze Dried products will taste great, stay fresh, and contribute to overall health.
A more traditional preservation process is dehydration, and many items offered by Shelf Reliance are dehydrated rather than freeze dried. Dehydration is an excellent option in many cases, but the process does tend to change the color and texture of your food.
Dehydration also doesn't remove as much water as freeze drying, resulting in foods that weigh more and have shorter shelf lives.Freeze dried foods last longer and are healthier than foods that are simply dehydrated. When rehydrated with water or any other liquid you choose, freeze dried products come back to their original state. They are ideal for simple snacking and inclusion in recipes. Because these foods are harvested and dried at peak freshness, you can have nutrition and great taste all year round.
So how does freeze drying work? The process has four steps:
1. Freezing: The product is frozen. This provides a necessary condition for low temperature drying.
2. Vacuum: After freezing, the product is placed under vacuum. This enables the frozen solvent in the product to vaporize without passing through the liquid phase, a process known as sublimation.
3. Heat: Heat is applied to the frozen product to accelerate sublimation.
4. Condensation: Low-temperature condenser plates remove the vaporized solvent from the vacuum chamber by converting it back to a solid. This completes the separation process.