Who invented frozen food?


The method of freezing food was first invented in 1929 by Clarence Birdseye a popular American inventor in order to preserve the food from decomposing. He developed and commercialized a method which quick-freezes food products into convenient packs by converting water into ice. This freezing however does not alter the original taste of the product.

He came upon this idea by watching people in the Arctic region preserve fish and meat in barrels of sea water that would soon freeze in the winter season. He concluded that low temperature allowed the food to remain fresh and this could be thawed and cooked whenever the need arose. Post this discovery he perfected the covering system for freezing food and sold his patent to Goldman Sachs trading corporation and the rest as they say is history.

Birdseye invented two methods for freezing food. One method was to hold the packaged food between two metal belts and this was chilled using a sodium chloride solution to a temperature of about minus 400 to minus 450F. The second method is the more popular of the two where packaged food was held between two metal plates and chilled to -250F by the evaporation of ammonia.

Birdseye’s invention created 168 patents not only for freezing but also for the type of paper used, packaging and other related innovations. Today manufacturers use various methods such as High Pressure shift freezing and Dehydrofreezing in order to freeze food items.

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