need maximum Refrigeration efficiency with minimum fuss?
Vacuum cooling is a method of temperature reduction where the produce is cooled down by the evaporation of moisture from inside the product itself. This process extracts heat from the product and as a consequence rapidly cools, reaching desired temperatures within 15 – 30 minutes for most products.
The quick and uniform cooling as the air pressure is the same in the entire space, there is no other method that can cool faster and more efficiently, especially with pre packed products.
Not only does vacuum cooling improve shelf life, it also shortens the time-to-market, gives you more constant cold store temperatures and the possibility to keep products in stock longer for when needed.
Vacuum cooling is the most energy efficient cooling method, the ambient temperature products are placed in an air-tight vessel then the door is closed and the air sucked out from the vessel and the air pressure reduced to a level where the moisture within the products starts evaporating spontaneously.
Fruits & vegetables can rapidly age and decompose once harvested and it is these products that benefit most from a fast removal of field heat by vacuum cooling. The optimal products to vacuum cool must be able to lose moisture easily. For this reason vacuum cooling is very well suited to leafy products, such as lettuces, Asian greens and silverbeet.
Products such as broccoli, celery and sweet corn can also be effectively cooled using this method. The best results are achieved when the products are cooled down within 2 hours after harvesting - this can only be achieved by vacuum cooling.
In the example shown right, vacuum cooling reduced the temperature of harvested broccoli by 11°C in just 15 minutes. Large vacuum coolers can cool many pallets or bins of product simultaneously, reducing demand on cool room systems. The process can even be used on packed cartons, so long as there is sufficient venting to allow air and water vapour to escape quickly.