Keeping It Smooth with Deep-Frozen Storage

Category: Cold Chain,Frozen Warehousing October 9, 2014

I like ice cream. All flavors, all recipes, served alone, in a cone or as a sundae. As dessert, after a ball game, you name it. I like it. Being in the business of deep-frozen storage and transportation, we tend to savor ice cream based on a slightly different criterion: ice crystals. Ice cream is full of ice crystals, very small, and virtually unnoticed. The goal is to keep it that way.

While many frozen foods can be preserved at temperatures between 0°F and -10°F, ice cream is best at -20°F. That’s not just cold: that’s take-your-breath-away cold. Many a Hanson Logistics associate works in that environment everyday. Deep-frozen, as it’s called, stops bacteria from even thinking about moving around and, as is the case with ice cream, it keeps the small ice crystals small and unnoticed so the ice cream remains smooth and delicious. If there’s an error in the distribution system, if a handler thinks anything below 32 degrees is good enough to keep ice cream frozen, Ostwald ripening enters the picture.

Ostwald ripening is the phenomena of warmth (relative) causing smaller ice crystals to join and become larger ice crystals. With ice cream, the ice crystals will change the smooth texture of the ice cream into something coarser. If you’ve ever taken ice cream in and out of the freezer overtime, you even begin to see large ice crystal in that once delicious ice cream.

Since Hanson Logistics was founded, we’ve been helping store ice cream. Our customer House of Flavors, for example, relied on Hanson for short-term storage for their ice cream products. When House of Flavors received a contract from TCBY in 2012 to produce private label ice, we added transportation to the mix and now deliver their products to all 41 Walmart Distribution Centers and many other retail distribution centers nationwide.

More recently, House of Flavors was awarded the opportunity to produce Sam’s Choice private label ice cream, again with Hanson Logistics as their supply chain partner for the nationwide distribution of the new product. And that’s keeping it smooth.