Since it happens to be National Frozen Foods Month, I figured this would be a good time to find out more about it.
I discovered a very helpful resource that is put together by The Library of Congress. It is called Everyday Mysteries Fun Science Facts from the Library of Congress . When I searched “frozen food,” not only was I able to find out that Clarence Birdseye was the person “credited with inventing in 1924 the quick freezing method, which produces the type of frozen foods that we know today,” but there was also information explaining how it is done. In addition you’ll find some handy Related Web Sites and a list of more resources under Further Reading.
Should you poke around a little more on the EVERYDAY MYSTERIES site, you ‘ll find some great information on Who “invented” the TV dinner, complete with period advertising from the days when these frozen convenience foods were first becoming popular.
If you would like to learn more about Clarence Birdseye, the person behind the BIRDSEYE brand of frozen foods, you may want to read Birdseye: the Adventures of a Curious Man by Mark Kurlansky. When Birdseye moved to Labrador, before the start of World War I, he recognized that the frigid arctic cold kept fish tasting fresh after thawing. He knew that he was on to something. The book traces how he developed the process to freeze food successfully and how he overcame the skepticism of consumers about this new technology and how it could capture the taste and texture of the food for eating months later. You can find this book at the Fountaindale Public Library, in the Biography section, on the 3rd Floor. You can learn more about this very curious man, while you’re enjoying a tasty, hot slice of pizza that you bought in the frozen food aisle of your local supermarket!
– Tom D.