Freeze Dried or Dehydrated
The Difference between Freeze Dried and Dehydrated Foods
Freeze drying is a process by which food is frozen and brought to temperatures, usually well below zero degrees Fahrenheit, and then slowly raised to a critical point where frozen water (ice) in the food sublimates - moving straight from a solid form to a gas, skipping the liquid stage altogether. There can be a number of advantages in the freeze drying process over other methods of dehydrating in the end product. In general, foods that have been freeze dried tend to retain more flavor, nutrients, and even the original textures found in fresh foods. We say “in general” because this is not always true. Every food and ingredient has different physical and chemical properties, so the results do vary. In some instances, freeze dried fruits and vegetables do not have a better flavor than those that have been dehydrated.
Freeze drying is a very precise and expensive drying process. Timing, humidity, temperature, and pressure are just a few factors that must be consistently targeted and measured. Being off by a single degree point can mean the difference between a successful production and a failed one. Often, the trade off for nutritional balance and shelf life make this process worth it.
The other methods of dehydrating usually require some sort of heat to remove the moisture from the foods. There are many ways of doing this, but because all use heat, there is some product degradation as enzymes and bacteria continue to work at breaking down the food, even while it is being dried. But again, this depends upon the food itself – as each food type reacts differently. The best dehydrated and freeze dried survival food companies that are producing good long-term survival food will be very selective when choose not only the ingredients, but the type of drying process used for each ingredient.
So while the freeze drying method is one great way to dehydrate food, it is not the only way, and should not be the only deciding factor when choosing what foods to include in your emergency food supply.
We at Survival Food offer a great range of free dried survival food and dehydrated foods. These dehydrated foods have a long shelf life, great taste and are perfect for any kind of emergency.