The Benefits of a Tunnel Freezer

A tunnel freezer is a type of cryogenic freezing system used in the food industry. They are commonly used to freeze meat cuts, burgers, fish fillets, poultry products, seafood, bakery products, ice cream, appetizers, ethnic foods and ready meals. The main benefit of a tunnel freezer is that it cools the product rapidly so that moisture, flavor and texture are preserved well.

When a tunnel freezer is connected to the correct infrastructure and used correctly, it can be an effective tool for preserving and protecting food products during production and distribution.

The basic function of a tunnel freezer is to use a conveyor belt to move products through a large, cylindrical freezing tunnel. A gas, such as nitrogen or carbon dioxide, is injected into the tunnel and used to cool or freeze the products. The frozen products are then transported to the distribution center where they are stored for later use or packaged.

Most tunnel freezers can be either straight or flat-belt designs, each with different benefits. Straight-belt tunnels use liquid nitrogen to quickly cool and freeze the product surface. The nitrogen converts to a very cold vapor in the tunnel, and the system is designed to make the most of that refrigeration by blowing the vapor over the food product for maximum effect, a process called vapor stripping.

In contrast, flat-belt tunnels use a much safer cryogen such as carbon dioxide to rapidly cool and freeze the product surface. When the carbon dioxide is sprayed over the product, it immediately converts to a very cold vapor. Then, fans are used to blow the cold vapor across the entire surface of the product in order to maximize its cooling effect. In the case of carbon dioxide, this is accomplished by a process known as sublimation.

When choosing a tunnel freezer, it is important to consider the type and size of your products as well as the type and amount of refrigeration that you will need. It is also crucial to keep in mind the overall cost of the freezer and how it will be connected to your distribution network.

Air Products high-performance tunnel freezers utilize Vortice Gas Flow Technology to halve your space requirement or double your production capacity in the same footprint, making them ideal for your IQF (Individual Quick Frozen) operation. These advanced systems are built to your specific water content, weight, shape and fragility specifications for a worry-free food processing solution. Get in touch with a local representative to learn more about the possibilities for your business..

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