The food-grade industrial gases market includes all the gases used to preserve and transfer food safely, like carbon dioxide, nitrogen, and oxygen. Without gases like carbon dioxide and nitrogen, the food and beverage industries would fall apart, as these gases increase shelf life, improve flavors, prevent food spoilage, and lock in nutrients.
Nitrogen and carbon dioxide are the two main noble gases that support the food-grade industrial gas market. These gases benefit many aspects of food packaging, including:
- Nutrient retention
- Transportation of foods and beverages
- Enhancement of flavors
- Prevention of aerobic microbial growth
- Food distribution
Nitrogen gas plays an essential role in the food-grade industrial gases market, as it aids in the preservation of food and beverages.
Nitrogen displaces oxygen and decreases moisture inside of packaged food. Moisture in packaged foods creates bacteria, mold, and mildew, which is why nitrogen is necessary for the food preservation process.
This gas also preserves freshness and retains nutrients, which helps the food or beverage last longer. Depending on what foods you’re preserving, you may need more nitrogen than oxygen or vice versa. Red meats tend to lose their color when they’re deprived of oxygen, so less nitrogen is used when packaging them.
On the other hand, coffee and beer require more nitrogen because it increases the frequency of those drinks. Beer needs nitrogen to create foam, and coffee is dispensed with a higher pressure when brewed with nitrogen.
Nitrogen is commonly used in sparkling drinks. All carbonated beverages in restaurants require a counter pressure gas source to make the drinks fizzy and avoid foaming and product loss. Nitrogen is a relatively inexpensive counter pressure gas, making it a popular gas choice.
Unlike carbon dioxide, nitrogen doesn’t produce acidity—it naturally produces sweetness. This gas makes drinks sweeter without any artificial flavorings or added sugar, which is why it’s often used in soft drinks.
When using nitrogen as a counter pressure gas in soda, you inject the gas into each drink container, pressurizing the container and adding to its rigidness. Nitrogen pressure provides the perfect amount of carbonation and improves the flavor of soda and sparkling drinks.
Carbon dioxide has several roles in the food-grade industrial gases market, as it improves processes related to food and drinks, including:
Like nitrogen, carbon dioxide is commonly used in carbonated drinks, like soda and mineral water, to maintain freshness, flavor, and color throughout the production, transportation, storage, and bottling processes.
This gas also helps the fermentation process of wine and beer. Without carbon dioxide, these alcoholic beverages would ferment too quickly, increasing the number of bacteria in them and changing the flavor profile.
To slow down fermentation, people use dry ice (frozen carbon dioxide) to blanket wine containers and keep them at low temperatures that prevent oxidation. Exposure to oxygen damages the flavor of wine, so the blanket of carbon dioxide is necessary for this process.
Breweries use carbon dioxide after their beer has already fermented to prevent oxidation. This gas primes bottles that hold beer and helps maintain quality in the barrel-to-bottle process.
Improve Your Fermentation Process With Dry Ice
Carbon dioxide is used as a refrigerant to preserve the taste and texture of food products, and it prevents foods from spoiling. This gas benefits many food production industries.
When you store grains, fruits, and/or vegetables, they become susceptible to pest infestations and bacteria growth. These result in product loss because the product is no longer good to eat.
Pests and insects die when exposed to a certain level of carbon dioxide, protecting the food or beverage from contamination. Carbon dioxide is a non-toxic gas, so many people prefer it over fumigation chemicals that some companies use to kill unwanted pests. Fumigation chemicals poison your food supply, so it’s safer to use carbon dioxide in this situation.
This gas also aids in keeping fruits and vegetables fresh for a long time, as it prevents ripening, molding, and hardening of produce.
This gas aids in the entire frozen meat process:
- Carbon dioxide immobilizes animals before slaughtering to increase the animal’s blood pressure, making higher-quality meat.
- After the slaughtering, dry ice is used to process, store, and preserve the meat through cryogenic freezing, a type of low-temperature freezing.
- Dry ice is then used when shipping the meat because it doesn’t melt, so the products don’t get wet during transportation.
If you’re looking to improve your food distribution and storage processes, CK Supply can help. We provide frozen carbon dioxide, or dry ice, to keep your foods fresh during transportation and carbon dioxide gas to use as a refrigerant.
We also offer nitrogen tanks of different sizes to maintain your gas storage system. Our tanks range from 50 gallons to 11,000 gallons, so we can help businesses of all sizes get the nitrogen they need.
When you need a supply of the noble gases used in food packaging, contact the professionals at CK Supply. We promise to get you on the right track with our laboratory-certified carbon dioxide and high-quality nitrogen.
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