For centuries, humans have practiced various food preservation techniques. Preservation methods like salting, drying, or pickling were used even before the knowledge that pathogens invisible to the naked eye such as bacteria and viruses could be foodborne.
Today, we have extensive technologies capable of preserving food products at their peak for long periods of time. Not only do we have chemical food preservatives that can be added to processed foods to extend their shelf life, but cold storage with refrigeration and freezing to protect fresh produce, meats, dairy products, and more without introducing additives or damaging the flavor, nutrition, and texture of goods.
At Minnesota Freezer Warehouse Company, our state-of-the-art climate-controlled facilities house dry, refrigerated, and frozen goods that are distributed globally year-round. Our temperature-controlled warehouse in Austin, MN and Albert Lea, MN play a role in supporting food safety and protecting food quality with comprehensive storage services and complete transportation accommodations.
While dry storage is a key component of our services for many food products, our temperature-controlled warehouse systems that generate refrigerated and frozen storage environments are critical for the prevention of food spoilage and the elimination of foodborne illnesses caused by bacteria, viruses, parasites, and mold growth.
Generally speaking, only heat through the cooking process will directly kill those contaminants, but the cold storage process is truly necessary to keep food quality stabilized and stop the growth of any pathogens that might be present. Temperatures below 40º F immediately slow the growth of bacteria, viruses, and mold, while freezer temperatures (between 0º F and -20º F) almost completely halt that growth.
If a trace amount of the common foodborne pathogens is present in a product, the conditions of our temperature-controlled warehouse are too cold for those contaminants to thrive, and some may even be fully neutralized when exposed to low temperatures.
Dangerous bacteria like Campylobacter jejuni, which is the most common cause of food poisoning in the U.S. and Europe, and those that cause botulism, salmonella, shigellosis, trichinosis, and other illnesses are forced into a dominant state when refrigerated or frozen. Preventing their growth means that trace amounts of pathogens can’t reproduce to a level that would be toxic when consumed even if the food isn’t cooked properly.
Other harmful foodborne contaminants like mold or parasites will also be halted in the freezing process. For many food products, including meats and seafood, the freezing process is even used to directly kill parasites. While cooking foods that may carry pathogens thoroughly is the only way to fully prevent food poisoning and other foodborne illness, storage technology that keeps food products in a strictly controlled climate has advanced food industry and food safety standards immensely.
To learn more about how our temperature-controlled warehouses in Austin, MN and Albert Lea, MN protect food quality and supports global food safety practices, contact MFWC today at (507) 373-1477 or firstname.lastname@example.org.