For growers of leafy vegetables, mushrooms, broccoli and other fresh produce, the most critical problem is how to keep your produce fresh and extend the product shelf life. Even if the vegetables are being planted and consumed in the same local city, without preservation the vegetables cannot be stored for more than three days. And, when you bear in mind that some fresh produce needs transport over long distances, in those cases good preservation is even more critical.
“Without a proper pre-cooling process, the quality and freshness of vegetables will be seriously affected. Furthermore, this will also affect the price of fresh produce, because the lower the quality, the lower the price. Therefore, in order to control the freshness and shelf life of fresh produce you need to use pre-cooling. Generally speaking you need to use pre-cooling immediately after picking in order to eliminate field heat,” explained Arvin from Vegfor Cooling Technology Limited.
At present, many growers in China still use traditional pre-cooling methods, such as a cold room, forced air cooling, etc. The cold room is suitable for the storage of fruits and vegetables after the pre-cooling process is done, but it’s not suitable to pre-cool leafy fresh produce immediately, because its cooling time is too long.
“If you pre-cool in the cold room, the quality of fresh produce will be seriously reduced, the same applies to forced air cooling. During the cooling process, the product cannot cool in time and uniformly which causes the product to rot. Compared with the traditional pre-cooling methods, vacuum pre-cooling can completely avoid these problems.
The vacuum cooler takes away the air from the cold chamber, and forms a vacuum state, so that the temperature of the fresh produce, both externally and inside, can be cooled quickly and uniformly. In addition, if the fresh produce is quickly pre-cooled by a vacuum cooler before being transported over long distances, it can be transported directly and immediately after the pre-cooling process. This means that growers can sell out their products after only 20-30 minutes of vacuum cooling. This can save much time and cost for growers.”