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Discover forager's Freeze-drying

You are only limited by your imagination, you can freeze-dry just about anything

Forager Food Co. is at the forefront of the Australian freeze-drying industry, offering a range of premium freeze-dried products, all expertly crafted using the finest ingredients and the latest in manufacturing facilities and technology.

A pioneer of the Australian freeze-drying industry, Forager Food Co. commenced operations in 2009 and has quickly grown to be the largest and most advanced manufacturer of freeze-dried products in Australia.

Forager Food Co. processes, freeze dries, and packages a diverse range of foods providing extended shelf life whilst protecting the most valuable and delicate ingredients, including vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, colours, and flavours.

But what is freeze-drying and how does it provide our delicious and nutritious products with extended shelf life without the addition of any artificial additives, colours, or flavours?

Freeze drying is the removal of moisture whilst the product is in a frozen state and under a vacuum. Whilst the technology required to achieve the process at scale is significant, the natural process is relatively simple.

Step 1. ice

First, we need ice. Once washed and cut, our fresh produce is placed onto trays and subjected to temperatures of -40 degrees Celsius in our blast freezers. Sub-zero temperatures need to be achieved as quickly as possible to ensure the integrity of the produce.

Step 2. air

The frozen produce is then transferred to one of our eight cylindrical freeze-dryers where the atmospheric pressure is lowered to create a vacuum, replicating similar conditions to outer space.

Forager’s Red Hills, Scottsdale and Western Junction sites all have state-of-the-art freeze-dryers and are capable of processing over 4,490 tonnes of wet product per annum.

Step 3. fire

Then we fire up the heat – but not too much!

The real magic happens in the vacuum chamber, where water boils at -20 degrees Celsius, turning the ice into water vapour, without first becoming a liquid.

The water vapour literally boils out of the produce whilst frozen so it is cold, not hot. This process is called sublimation and is the essential part of freeze-drying that allows our produce, especially delicate berries, to maintain their shape.

The water vapour is then captured on frozen pipes at the end of the freeze-dryer that are at -40 degrees Celsius or colder. When the product is finished being freeze dried, all of the moisture in the product has migrated to the pipes (called the condenser) where it forms a solid block of ice.

The product is now completely dry but retains its colour, shape and nutritional value – almost identical to the fresh product.

Benefits of freeze-dried food​

Apart from the fact that freeze-dried food is delicious, there are many practical reasons why you might freeze-dry food.

  • Volatile antioxidants and vitamins like vitamin C are preserved in the product.
  • Substantially improved shelf life
  • Reduction in weight of products
  • Creates a unique texture unlike any other
  • Locks in the goodness and flavour

Learn more about forager

Huon Aquaculture

“Working with Forager’s expertise and technology, we created a new product that our customers love!”

Discover how we work with Tasmanian businesses to develop new products using our advanced freeze-drying technology.