You may not realize it, but someday freeze-dried food could save your life. Although once the food is freeze-dried it loses a lot of its nutrients, the ability to stay edible and somewhat nutritious for months or even years without refrigeration. But how could it save your life? You never know what life can bring your way.
What is Freeze-Dried Food?
When food such as fruits, vegetables, and meats are freeze-dried a machine literally freezes all of the moisture out of them and leaves them extremely dried out and void of all water or water particles.
What happens during the freeze-drying process is the article of food that is being processed is placed into a chamber where the air pressure is dropped far below the regular pressure of air. Once the air pressure is lowered, the chamber will be frozen to a point where it freezes the entire area so that all moisture is crystallized.
As the crystals begin to form the chamber is turned into a vacuum chamber where all of the moisture is carried away before it even has a chance to reach a liquid state again. The liquid is transformed from a solid state into a gas state without being allowed to transform to a liquid state.
Once the food item has been completely relieved of all traces of water it is then officially freeze-dried and is ready to be packaged or re-hydrated for consumption.
Long-Lasting Source of Food
Once food has been freeze-dried most of the components that allow it to break down and rot are removed completely. When anything has moisture in it the possibility of oxidation is present. Food that lays around without being sealed up or refrigerated is subsessile to oxidation which breaks down the cells and structure of the food.
In addition to moisture being pulled away from the food, the way that it is packed does not allow any oxygen to reach the food and contaminate the material.
Some types of freeze-dried products such as freeze-dried cottage cheese can last up to 30 years without being refrigerated. This is pretty amazing especially when you realize that cottage cheese is a highly nutritional source of complete protein and can help to provide nourishment to people and keep them alive during times of famine.
Situations That Could Merit Freeze-Dried Nutrition
Nobody ever really knows when a horrible tragedy will happen. There are countless situations that could render a community helpless and without food. For example, when the hurricanes hit New Orleans and left thousands of families stranded in flooded neighborhoods without potable water, food, and power there were thousands of people that needed food.
In the event that a catastrophic event occurs and the government declares Martial Law where nobody can leave their homes without being shot, anybody that has a long time stockpile of freeze-dried foods will be fortunate to have enough to eat for a while without having to worry about refrigeration or the necessity of power to have food.
Some instances that could cause a food shortage are:
- Transportation crisis
- Fuel shortage
- Natural disaster
None of these above situations are things that we would want to happen in our lives, but in the event that an emergency happened where people were in a position that left them without food and a way to eat, having a good supply of freeze-dried foods on hand could very much save them from starving to death.
Some of the other types of foods that can save lives are things that do not perish or go bad over an extended amount of time. For example, dried beans and rice can last a long time without rotting or going bad. The only problem with these is that you need water and heat to get them to a point where they can be eaten.
Other types of foods that can be great for survival storage are:
- Canned tuna
- Canned soups
- Canned meats
- Dried fruit
- Dried nuts
- Dried legumes
- Dried split peas
Nut butter such as peanut butter, almond butter, and cashew butter are types of non-perishable foods that can last for extended amounts of time if an emergency is ever deemed necessary.
Many of the companies out there that offer freeze-dried goods have fully prepared meals to offer as food. This is where an entire meal made up of something like meatloaf, mashed potatoes, corn, and pie for dessert are freeze-dried and combined into one meal and packaged as such.
If you can imagine a frozen TV dinner that you pull out of the freezer and pop into the microwave, you can kind of see a similarity between a freeze-dried dinner and a TV dinner. Both are fully prepared meals that only need a little bit of prep work to get going and they become full-fledged dinners, lunches, or even breakfasts.
Some freeze-dried meals can be:
- Lasagna and vegetables
- Roast beef with baked potato
- Scrambled eggs and pancakes
- Fried chicken and macaroni & cheese
There are several companies out there that offer a complete survival kit that includes a year’s worth of freeze-dried meals. They are not cheap, but they do offer bulk pricing that does cost at least half as much as if you were to buy it all separately.
Even if you are not in a situation where it is life and death, the freeze-dried snacks that are available on the market today are pretty awesome. Some of the favorites are:
- Ice cream
- Ice cream sandwiches
- Chocolate cake
Freeze-dried ice cream is actually a pretty big deal in many states. Although it does not have the classic creamy icy taste that people love it does offer a unique flavor and a pretty addictive taste if you ever try it.
The great thing about freeze-drying stuff is that you can freeze dry practically anything. Ice cream, chocolate, cake, pie, donuts…you name it. As you can tell, freeze dried cream is my absolute favorite and it is light, delicious, and gives the perfect amount of sweetness! I have given a link to my favorite source of freeze dried ice cream and the price also makes it a great staple to stock up on!