It is hard to overlook the growing trend of peas, especially frozen peas. IQF Frozen peas have gained their popularity in the frozen food aisle of supermarkets over the last few years. More and more consumers have now realized that frozen peas are just as delicious and nutritious as the fresh ones.
Fresh quality peas are usually available only for a short period of time. Before the fresh peas start getting spoiled, food producers need to sell them immediately to not end up with a net loss. Not to mention, there is always a risk to lose fresh peas’ natural appearance, crunchy texture, and quality during long transportation and long storage periods.
IQF peas might be considered as an easy-to-freeze product, however, it can get challenging to achieve premium IQF peas. To achieve high-quality IQF frozen peas, it is vital to optimize and carefully adjust each step along the whole process (blanching, chilling, and freezing).
BLANCHING WITH EVEN TEMPERATURE CONTROL AND FLEXIBLE TIME
Blanching is needed to deactivate the enzymatic activity in vegetables which accelerate their spoilage. But short blanching for peas is crucial for stopping this process. Generally, peas are considered easy to be over-blanched but with OctoFrost™ IF Blancher over-blanching is completely avoided. By using the OctoFrost™ IF Blancher, processors have full control of blanching temperature and time. Moreover, blanching time can be flexible, designated to the precise blanching minutes preferred by the processors.
In addition, the desired core temperature of peas can be reached in a shorter time with the IF Blancher, which results in lower energy consumption. The quicker blanching is possible in the OctoFrost IF Blancher due to the combination of the cross-flow water system, the rain-shower system and the high-volume recirculated water that passes through the product layer. Since there is an even temperature in every zone of the IF Blancher, thus peas’ nutrition, protein, and vitamins are preserved.
Peas processors can also opt for a second temperature zone in OctoFrost™ IF Blancher to avoid over-blanching, to preserve peas’ original texture, and to prevent skin lose.
QUICK CHILLING RESULTS IN HIGH YIELD
The ice-cold water running through the rain-shower system of the OctoFrost™ IF Chiller always stays below 6°C to avoid bacteria growth and to ensure food safety. The quick chilling allows the product’s core temperature to drop below 5°C which ensures the retention of peas’ moisture level and flavor. Such an effectively chilled product leads to better freezing result in the IQF freezing stage.
FREEZING WITH MINIMAL DEHYDRATION AND LESS THAN 0.5% SNOW FORMATION
The OctoFrost™ IQF freezer is designed with unique and optimal aerodynamics that can minimize product dehydration and keep the snow formation in the freezer below 0.5%. This is possible with the quick crust-freezing in the first part of the IQF tunnel which locks in the moisture of the product. Low dehydration means higher yield without increasing the resources on raw material, manpower, or power consumption. Moreover, the frozen peas will continuously maintain their natural appearance, texture, color, and shape thus they can be sold at a premium price- in other words, a revenue gain for peas producers.
OctoFrost provides all the equipment (Blancher, Chiller, Freezer) needed for processing premium IQF peas. With food safety standards in frozen food increased all around the world, OctoFrost is determined to provide the most food-safe equipment on the market. Peas processors not only produce high-quality, food-safe final products but also gain profits by retaining lower power consumption and manpower.