Ready meals could become healthier and of higher quality as a result of the project, Linde said.
Linde Gases has announced that BOC, Linde’s subsidiary in the UK and Ireland, is set to be a primary collaboration partner in a new two-year venture into developing an innovative cooking and cooling system that dramatically improves the quality and healthiness of ready meals.
The Advanced Cooking and Cooling Technology project, funded by Innovate UK, will seek to combine two food manufacturing processes – steam infusion technology for rapid cooking, and rapid cooling using liquid nitrogen. The new integrated system will feature an innovative cryogenic rapid cooler from BOC and will not only enable just-in-time production, but will greatly enhance food production of ready meals, soups and other sauce-based food products.
Over the course of the project, a full scientific understanding of the effects of using liquid nitrogen on sauces and soups – and the vegetables, fruits and meats they contain – will be gained in order to maximise nutritional values, Linde said. It is anticipated that product shelf life could also be increased and waste minimised as it will incorporate a fully flexible process to reduce production, cleaning and changeover times for increasingly variable supply requirements.
BOC business development manager, application technology Cedric Hanson said: “There are major opportunities for improvement in food manufacturing – improving nutritional values and productivity and reducing waste – so BOC is delighted to be a key partner in this project. We believe it will result in the development of a new generation of food products and processes that are not possible using current process technologies.”
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2023
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