A microsite designed to illustrate the possibilities for applying liquid nitrogen to various phases of food production shows how tricky food-processing problems can be solved with nitrogen solutions.

The “Think About It” microsite developed by Air Products, Lehigh Valley, Pa., has a series of short videos intended to inspire food manufacturers to consider potential applications within their own processes. Examples where liquid nitrogen can help include improving grinding and chopping, eliminating sticky food processing problems and removing production bottlenecks.

Traditionally, liquid nitrogen has been used in the food industry to power tunnel or spiral freezers for the final preservation of food before packaging and shipment. Today, liquid nitrogen also is being used to remove troublesome heat from food processes up and down the production line, resulting in increased production throughput and reduced cycle times.

  • In mixing applications, liquid nitrogen is used to instantly stop the cooking process in order to chill sauces and gravies, ultimately reducing cooling times.
  • In coating applications, the low temperature of liquid nitrogen provides greater control of the enrobing process.
  • During grinding, liquid nitrogen can be used to eliminate frictional heat to help improve the throughput of mills and the consistency of the grind. This also helps to prevent the loss of flavor and aroma components in food additives, ingredients and functional foods.

The microsite includes literature, tools and tutorials. To learn more about how liquid nitrogen solutions for food processing problems, visit www.airproducts.com/thinkaboutit.