Home Lyophilizer

Home lyophilizer is a suitable way of preparing for lean and difficult moments. This allows you to preserve any food you consume easily. Note that the food will still maintain its fantastic taste and retain the entire nutritional value for approximately 25 years with appropriate packaging and storage.

You must know that freeze-drying or lyophilization is a process of removing moisture from a product after it undergoes freezing, and it is under the vacuum. This enables the ice to alter straight from its solid form to vapor without going through the liquid phase. Furthermore, this process entails three separate, interdependent, and unique processes; primarily:

  • Freezing
  • Sublimation (Primary drying)
  • Desorption (secondary drying)

If you are not familiar with the home lyophilizer, worry less because this article will keep your ore informed about it.

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Why Get a Home Lyophilizer?

Home lyophilizer is indispensable for any home. It does not only preserve food and improve the life shelf, it makes such food taste great and nutritious. If you are looking for a system that can guarantee long term food storage, then you can always consider this product. Here are some of the factors that make it indispensable for any home.

Home freeze-dried food is tasty

The major reason is that it makes the food tasty because of the wonderful preservation method. It enhances the life shelf making it tastier and nutritious.

Easy to make

Furthermore, it is easy to make. Once you have the freezer in the home, you do not need to be an expert before you can use it to preserve your food. It is good for everyone.

Long term food storage

You can preserve the food as long as you like and it will not damage. It does away with those microorganisms responsible for food decomposition. You can use this to store vegetables, fruits, and so on.

Allergy-friendly

Furthermore, it is allergy-friendly, as anybody can consume such foods without complaint.

Less food waste

The installation of lyophilizer in the home leads to less food waste. Foods that would have been thrown away were freeze and preserved. You can use such preserved food another time. It does not only prevent food waste; it saves money as well.

Special dietary needs

It can serve the special dietary needs of its users. You can preserve such food and use them when you want.

Cool

The device helps the food retains its nutrients and internal structure. It makes it cool and fresh. It does not lose anything.

It removes water from food without applying any heating method. While increasing the shelf life of food, it also maintains food quality. Structural and ingredient integrity in such food is guaranteed. Food flavor and quality will remain intact pending the time you consume it. Once the food materials are perishable, it can preserve it till such a time you are ready to use it.

 

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When Do You Need a Home Lyophilizer?

Home lyophilizer is a necessity for any home. Once you have any food to preserve you need this product. When you have bulk food ingredients that you think can easily perish if you do not preserve them, then you require this product.

The major purpose of this tool in the food industry and especially in the home is to extend the life shelf of the food without damaging the quality.

Some seasonal fruits need to be preserved for another day when you need it. This technology is to make that preservation possible.

If you are in some professions such as astronauts, military, hikers, you need something to freeze your food so that they can become useful when you want to use them. Once you are not able to consume the food item fresh, and you want to keep it for another time, there is the need to maintain the life shelf and lyophilizer is what you need to achieve that. Once you have food to freeze you need this device in your home.

 

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Different Types of Home Lyophilizer

There are different types of home lyophilizes in the market today. The four most common include the regular or normal type, top press, manifold, as well as manifold Top press, and finally T type.

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Normal Type

Regular or normal type as the name implies is the most common and it was the first to be introduced and they work on the basic principle. It is good for the preservation of bulk food and fruits. It is stored in one place.

Top Press Type

The second popular type is the Top Press. This is also great and you can distinguish from the other with its stoppering device as well as its ceiling caps. It is movable.

Manifold type

If you want to preserve many things at a time. It comes with the basic features as well as flasks of about eight pieces. This is bigger than the previous models.

Manifold Top Press

Manifold Top Press is a combination of the manifold and Top press features. This implies that it comes with stoppering devices, as well as eight pieces of flasks.

T Type

The T Type is the last and this is the biggest among them. It has more features than the others such as the dry chamber, 24 ports as well as jars and flasks.

 

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How to Choose Suitable Types?

You have seen the various kinds of home lyophilizers in the market. You don’t need to buy all of them at the same time. You can choose any of them to use and different factors guide you in the choice you make.

The first thing is the quantity

If you want to preserve bulk samples like fruits and food, then you can choose the basic type which is the normal type.

If you want to preserve larger quantities, then you can choose the top press type. This model comes with a stoppering device and it seals the cap after drying. If you want to preserve it for a longer time, then the top press should be a better option.

If you are looking for a lyophilizer that can help in your food processing, you can use Manifold type. This comes with eight mounted flasks, and you can process your foods with ease here.

When the samples become even larger, then manifold top press device might be the option here. This comes with eight flasks as well as a stoppering device.

When you are making it for a large scale use, the T Type model is good for that purpose. It comes with a dry chamber as well as 24 ports and here you can retrieve the vitals. It also comes with flasks or jars depending on what you prefer.

 

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Features of Home Lyophilizer

Home lyophilizer comes with important features that make it highly functional. The most important features are the following:

*Vacuum system

It comes with a vacuum system and this is composed of a separate vacuum pump that is connected to a condenser and the product chamber. The condenser is always airtight and this is where most of the actions take place.

*Shelf size

It comes with a shelf but the size depends on the need. The shelf has space and space also varies depending on the specific needs of the dryer.

*Shelf Style

Moreover, the shelf is available in different styles. There are at least two styles which include the bulk style, as well as the stoppering style. When it is a bulk style, it is fixed in one place. Stoppering on the other hand means that it is movable.

*Condenser

Furthermore, it must feature a condenser. Usually, the condenser can be located internally or outside the lyophilizer. Most people prefer the internal system because it makes vapor flow much easier and it is less expensive. The external device on the other hand must feature isolation valve for the separation purpose. External is for lab purposes.

 

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How Does the Home Lyophilizer work?

Whether it is home or lab lyophilizer, the working process is almost the same thing. It works through a process known as sublimation. This is the process where the substance is turned from the solid-state to the vapor state. It bye passes the liquid state. It works through different phases to reach the final stage where you can preserve it for a long time.

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The first part is the freezing process. This is a period when water in the product is converted to the ice form.

It is then subjected to a vacuum and the ice is changed from ice form to the water vapor.

The next is stage is when you draw off the water vapor from the product. When the ice is sublimated, the food item is then freeze-dried and you can remove it from the machine.

This process is great, it reduces or even prevents damage and it is not subjected to any heating process. The rehydration process is complete and it is accomplished fast.

It is water content in the material that makes is susceptible to bacteria invasion. When that water is removed from the system it does not tamper with the structure and it will make it last longer.

Foods are going to spoil by microorganisms which will react with water in the food. When bacteria feed on that matter, it forces it to decompose. When the water element is removed, there is nothing left for the microorganism to feed on.

 

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Applications of Home Lyophilizer

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It can be used to increase shelf life

Home lyophilizer has some important applications that make it indispensable. The most important application for home use is for the preservation of food. It makes lasts longer by maintaining the life shelf for a longer time. If you have perishable food items you want to preserve in your home, then you can consider this product.

  • It can preserve it and make it last longer.
  • It is useful in food preservation
  • It is used for huge or bulk food storage. If you have fruits or vegetables, you want to keep for future use it can help to preserve them.
  • It removes microorganism and used for food industrial applications
  • It is used to remove microorganisms such as bacteria from the food. The process converts water in the food to vapor. In the process, bacteria would no longer be able to damage the food. It is widely used in the food industry across the world and not only in the home.

Pharmaceutical services

The product is widely used in the drug industry and laboratories across the world to preserve drugs. Some drugs require special preservation before they can become potent. This tool is needed to preserve them. It is widely used in the laboratory to prolong the lifespan of chemicals.

Nasa and military rations

It is great for hikers because freeze-drying of food does not only prolong the lifespan, it reduces the overall weight. If you want to travel with large quantities of food, it reduces the overall weight making it perfect for astronauts, and military food rationing.

It is also used for the following purposes:

*Antibiotics

*Vaccines

*Bacteria

*Hormones

*Vitamins

*Collagen and liposome

 

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Home Freeze Dryer Vs. Home Lyophilizer

Some people are finding it hard to differentiate between home freeze dryer and home lyophilizer. The truth is that there are lots of similarities between them just as differences are existing between the two.

Home lyophilization is a process of removal of water from perishable food items for preservation. The aim is to extend the shelf life of such a product and also to make it more portable. The process starts by freezing the food material, and then reducing the pressure and finally add heat to make it possible for the frozen water to sublimate.

Freeze drying also uses the same sublimation method, and it is also a way of preserving food. It does away with refrigeration. Freeze drying food is common and it is a way of extending the life shelf of food. It is commonly eaten by astronauts as well as mountain climbers. Such foods are common these days. When such foods are dried they would become absorbent and to restore such food to the original state, it is a question of adding water to it.

The major difference between the two is in the area of application which implies there are differences in the way these two products are used.

The differences in the use also have to do with the size and the capacity. It appears that home freeze dryers are smaller. Moreover, there are differences in the area of measurement, cost, and temperature variations. These are often used interchangeably and they almost serve the same purpose.

 

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What’s the Difference Between a Home Lyophilizer and a Lab Lyophilizer?

Lyophilizers can be used in the home as well as in the industry. Those meant for industrial uses are known as lab lyophilizers. There are similarities and differences between the two. They work based on the same principle. However, you can always differentiate between the two rely on these features.

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Application

The best way to spot the differences in how they are used. Those meant for the home is for freeze-drying purpose. Lab products are meant for chemical sample preservation. It is to make it potent for research and testing. Because of that lab products are larger and can serve more uses.

Size and capacity

You can tell the differences between the two from their sizes and their capacity. Homemade versions are generally smaller. It is an all-inclusive unit and they come with a vacuum. You can even keep it on a countertop. This is different from the lab version which is larger and comes with many components. The Lab version can process more items than the home version. When it comes to capacity, the lab version is much bigger.

Temperature

Another area of difference is in the temperature variation. You will expect the lab version to reach up to -58 F to -105F. The home version on the other hand stands at -40F on the average.

Measurements

The measurement method is different for the two. For the home use, it is measured in gallons or Fahrenheit while that of the lab is measured in Celsius and liters.

Cost

There is also variation in the cost. Lab versions are more expensive than the home version which is generally cheaper. Some people that could not afford the lab version can use the home variation for that purpose.

Similarities

Now that you have seen the differences that exist between the two, there are also similarities in them. They almost work the same way and they serve the same purpose and that is to do away with moisture and for long time storage.

 

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Home Freezer Method

With the home freezer method, you require to place your food in minimal pieces of a tray, such as the cooling rack, air drying rack or a cookie sheet, then put it in your freezer. Additionally, more in-depth freezer functions effectively and efficiently. In the first hours, the food begins to freeze itself, but the drying process might take weeks, which is the sublimation process. This process separates the freeze-drying from food freezing inside containers or sealed bags.

You must know that it takes many weeks to complete. Ideally, you can check if the entire process of home freezer method has ended by getting outside a frozen piece and let it settle at room temperature. In case your food changes to being black or dark, it means the entire process is not over. Any frozen food that does not change color must have undergone thorough freezing. This is more of an art and not science. Once you achieve this correctly, you can proceed and use ziplock bags to store your freeze-dried food. This storage device maintains your dried food under a temperature of 7 degrees.

With the methods mentioned above, you can comfortably freeze dry your food at home without using a machine.

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Home Lyophilizer Noise

The refrigerator unit runs in the first cycle; the vacuum pump runs in the second part of the cycle. Note that the noise is not that loud, and it is not easily noticeable. However, it is perfect that you locate your lyophilizer in a room where the door can be closed. The noise should not worry since it will not interfere with your duties.

 

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Maintenance of Home Lyophilizer

A home lyophilizer requires regular maintenance, and if you cannot afford to run maintenance on your freeze dryer, it is perfect that you do not get it. How long your freeze dryer is likely to serve you, depends on how often it is always in use, how you use it, and how well you maintain it. There are several ways you can maintain your home lyophilizer. These are:

Run regular vacuum pump maintenance

In case your freeze dryer does not pull enough vacuum, it is appropriate that you run regular vacuum pump maintenance. Furthermore, it will help you solve the problem by minimizing the downtime immediately and maximizing the unit life in the long term. Note that you can also use solvent traps or secondary acid to prolong your vacuum pump life. This generates additional barriers between your pump as well as the lyophilizer.

Ensure the freeze dryer is compatible with the temperature of your sample

Before you use your freeze dryer, ensure that your sample’s temperature is much compatible with your entire freeze dryer system. It is appropriate that you set aside your tricky sample and select the system based on the requirement. You can also choose to modify the temperature of your freeze dryer’s condenser. Ideally, it should be 10-15 degrees below the eutectic point of your sample.

Clean you home lyophilizer after every use

It is a must that you drain and defrosts your condenser after each use. It is appropriate that you rinse several times and wipe any components that might have linked the used chemicals to minimize the risk of damage.

 

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Guides of Dried Food From Home Lyophilizer Choosing and Storage

1. What Foods Can You Freeze Dry?

You can freeze-dry most foods, such as desserts, entire meals, dairy, meats, vegetables, and fruits. Moreover, note that freeze-drying is a way of preserving your cooked grains as well as pasta.

2. What Foods Can’t You Freeze Dry?

There are a variety of foods that can be freeze-dried; at the same time, there are also several that you cannot freeze dry. You need to note that most foods with mostly sugar or fat do not freeze-dry well. Furthermore, fat will not dry, but it heats up hence melting in the entire unit and coating almost every surface n you freeze dryer. On the other hand, sugar can bind to water; this makes it settle in food. This is likely to promote bacteria growth, which is not harmful to the body if consumed. Therefore, there are several foods you cannot freeze dry, such as jam, syrup, honey, butter, pure chocolate, and peanut butter.

3. How Long Does Freeze-drying Take?

For an average load, freeze-drying takes approximately 24 hours. However, with new software, you can freeze dry a lot of foods within 13 hours. Furthermore, humid and warm conditions maximize the drying duration.

4. Food Storage Options

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-Homemade freeze-dried foods

This option of storage is cost-efficient and has a prolonged shelf life. Furthermore, it does not need a tricky rotation schedule. With this kind of storage, your food is likely to be suitable for 25 years without interfering with the nutritional value during the entire period.

-Canned foods

It is a popular procedure for food preservation. On the other hand, it has a short shelf life of three years. This means it needs you to take it through a careful schedule of rotation to avoid getting stuck with cans of food no longer fit for consumption.

-Frozen foods

Frozen foods can serve you for several years if they are appropriately stored. Frozen foods need you to avoid all the freezer burns. Additional power outage concern is likely to damage the food. Even though it is a useful option for food storage.

-Dehydrated foods

This food storage option has three years’ shelf life, especially when packed and stored appropriately. Note that the process of food dehydration can destroy approximately 40% of your food nutritional value. Moreover, it uses heat to eliminate water from your food, and it does not guarantee you 100% water removal from food; hence this can damage your food and encourage the growth of mold.

-Commercially freeze-dried foods

This option of food storage is very costly, and you might accompany it with several additives. Therefore, many commercial freeze-dried foods have maximum carbohydrates content with a bit of vegetable and fruits.

 

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DIY Your Homemade Lyophilizer

There are a variety of lyophilizer types that you can use to freeze dry your food, but most of them are too costly. To avoid unnecessary costs, you can opt for a homemade lyophilizer. Several steps will guide you to DIY your homemade lyophilizer. These steps include:

Step 1

If you do not have a Styrofoam cooler, ensure that you purchase one. The size of food you need to freeze dry, determinant factor of the size of Styrofoam you should buy. Note that the cooler should be minimal enough for the package of food without leaving extra space.

Step 2

On your cooler’s bottom part position across the dry ice layer if you are ready to start using your freeze dryer. However, do not place dry ice in your cooler if you will not use your homemade freeze dryer immediately.

Step 3

Set the food you want to freeze dry on the layer of the dry ice. Avoid stacking bags or food on top of one another; instead, position them side by side in your homemade lyophilizer. After that, ensure that you cover it with some layer of the dry ice. Moreover, place another package of food on top of the dry ice. Repeat the process several times until your Styrofoam cooler is full. Furthermore, ensure that the last layer in your Styrofoam cooler is dry ice.

Step 4

Put a lid on your Styrofoam cooler and wait for 30 minutes. If time is over, examine the food being freeze-dried is frozen to solid-state. In case it is not ready, place your lid back and monitor after every 5 minutes. When your freeze-dried food is ready, please remove them and position them in the usual freezer until they become ready. On the other hand, if your freeze-dried food has been vacuum sealed before your commenced freeze-drying, you can skip putting them in the normal freezer instead of storing them in a food closet or pantry.

 

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FAQ:

#1. How Do I Use Freeze-dried Foods in Recipes?

You must know how much product you require to add, especially when substituting powdered, freeze-dried, and dehydrated products in your suitable recipes. You must be knowing that freeze-dried vegetables and fruits, which have a minimal amount of sugar, get dry very fast. This makes it easy for you to crush them into a powder form using the food processor or even blender. The end product is likely to be bright in color as well as exceptionally flavored. You can opt to use this powder for flavoring or even making smoothies. For example, you can choose to add the strawberry powder to produce strawberry whipped flavored cream. Note that you can make a lot of recipes using freeze-dried foods.

 

#2. How Do I Store Freeze-dried Food?

How you store your freeze-dried food determines how long it will be fit for consumption. Therefore, you should consider this as an essential part of food storage. So, when the cycle for freeze-drying is through, ensure that you package food in containers. Moreover, these containers should be oxygen and moisture-proof like cans, mason jars, or Mylar. On the other hand, you can opt to add an oxygen absorber, which boosts freshness.

Mylar bags

Foods such as meat with any given amount of fat are likely to spoil in a few weeks if you do not use an airtight container plus the oxygen absorber and seal it correctly. For long term storage, it is ideal that you make good use of Mylar bags, which are the most durable and efficient. This means they can store your food or quite a long duration.

Mason jars

On the other hand, Mason jars are a perfect choice for storing freeze-dried foods. However, they are only ideal if the weight does not matter, and you have sufficient room for your glass jar. You can also use it when you do not handle tectonic disturbances. To vacuum seal jars, it is ideal that you use the Foodsaver attachment.

Oxygen absorber

You can also choose to do away with the shelving from your freeze dryer and make use of the vacuum cycle. In case you want to store your food for a long duration, use the oxygen absorber to vacuum pack your food, especially in the jars.

Vacuum seal

If you want to store it for the short term, it is appropriate that you vacuum seal with absolutely no oxygen absorbers. You can only store your freeze-dried food in food saver plastic bags if you want to store it for the short term. Thus, Choose the best way to store your food and experience perfect results.

#3. Can I Freeze Dry at Home Without a Machine?

Absolutely yes. This might sound like a joke, but you do not require a freeze-drying machine to make freeze-dried foods. There are several methods you can freeze dry your food without any machine. These are:

Use dry ice method

Note that you can use the dry ice method to freeze dry your food. Moreover, dry ices eliminate all the moisture from your food quickly. This means the entire process of freeze-drying is much faster. Therefore, it is appropriate that you time the day that the level of humidity is zero.

However, you should not implement this method during a rainy season as the humidity is likely to make it harder for you to freeze dry your food. Before you commence the whole process, make sure you have an enormous container, at least twice the size of the food you need to freeze dry and an insulated pair of gloves. After that, completely engulf your food using dry ice as you fill the container. Ensure that 1lb of your food gets 1lb of dry ice; avoid sealing the container as it might explode.

 

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Conclusion

Based on the above information, you are now well familiarized with home lyophilizer. Therefore, it calls upon you to implement the above information to freeze dry your food and store them appropriately. I hope that this article will benefit you to better understand the home lyophilizer.


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