Top-Icing & Flake Ice
Top icing is the process of placing a 2-4 inch layer of flake ice across the pallets of pre-cooled produce to ensure it stays cool as it is transported to various destinations. Trucks are loaded with pre-cooled fresh produce, then top-iced just before shipment. As you might imagine, top-icing adds a significant amount of weight to the load—when a 40 ft. trailer is top-iced, as much as 8,000 pounds can be added to the load. As the top-ice melts, the chilled water trickles down through the load to keep the cooling process going until delivery. Top-icing is most effective in preventing any increases in temperature during transportation.
Not only is top-icing used in the transportation of produce, but it is also used in packing shellfish and other tough products, icing hides or skins, bulk packaging and cooling of whole fish such as trout and salmon, and virtually any long-distance transport of perishable goods. Because our competitive food market demands fresh, high-quality products, rapid and thorough cooling immediately after harvest as well as during the transport time is essential. Ice has been used for many years to keep perishable foods fresh—not only to rapidly remove heat when first applied but to continue absorbing heat as the ice melts. No matter whether your operation is relatively small, or very large, Howe Corporation flake ice machines offer a wide array of benefits.
Produce items such as asparagus, sweet corn, carrots, cantaloupes, leafy greens, cauliflower, broccoli, and green onions are most likely to benefit from top-icing with flake ice. Some produce items like strawberries and blueberries do not tolerate wetting, and others, like squash and tomatoes, can be injured when the chill level reaches freezing. Modern ice flake machines are several times as energy-efficient as block ice-making equipment. Flake ice can be added in measured amounts to the top of each carton filled with products but is more often simply layered over the entire load.
Choose Howe Ice Flakers
If you are considering a commercial flake ice machine, we hope you will consider Howe Corporation for your ice machine needs. Our flake ice machines offer the most efficient cooling medium when compared to other cooling methods. When you purchase a Howe flake ice machine you will get the most energy-efficient flaker available with a higher cooling capacity—the most surface contact area over other ice forms. We also offer versatility—a wide range of models and features to meet your exact needs. Howe flake ice stands up against the rest! Contact Howe Corporation today to discuss your specific needs.
For any questions regarding ice flake machines or any of our products, please contact us. One of our Howe sales representatives will be happy to speak with you about your needs and help you find the perfect solution.