Vacuum pack machines are becoming increasingly popular both for home and business use. They have an advantage of the trusty freezer bag because they help prevent against freezer burn and ice build-up on the product you’re trying to freeze. Not to mention that they save the space that multiple Tupperware containers will eat through in no time.
That said, vacuum packers aren’t for everyone. Some would argue that these devices are best suited to a business environment, so we decided to put this to the test. We’ve highlighted below some of the main advantages of a vacuum sealer and rated them against home and business use. This should help you decide whether a vacuum sealer is the right purchase for you.
Deciding on the right vacuum sealer for your business is a big decision, so it pays to speak to an expert. First Food Machinery are a great place to start, offering a range of different machines with both purchase and leasing options.
Vacuum packing is a safer way to store food
This is the most obvious advantage of a vacuum sealer. Freezing has been an economical and effective way of preserving food for thousands of years, though it’s not without its drawbacks. Contrary to popular belief, freezing food doesn’t actually kill harmful bacteria; rather it just slows the rate at which they can develop. Vacuum packing your food removes oxygen from the equation, thereby further reducing the rate of bacterial growth.
Whilst this is obviously an advantage to both home and business environments, it’s probably more likely to be of use to businesses who need to store a large amount of food over a longer period of time. Home users might find it useful if they store a lot of food, e.g. if they have a chest freezer full of meat. Though most will probably find that regular freezer bags will do the job just fine.
Usefulness ratio: 30% home, 70% business.
Vacuum packing protects your food
The most common issue people encounter when freezing food is so-called ‘freezer burn’. This normally happens when a product hasn’t been wrapped properly before being put in the freezer. A beef steak, for example, is likely to dry out in these conditions. You can still eat it but it just won’t taste as good. Vacuum packing will protect against this by creating an airtight seal.
This is something that will definitely be an advantage to business users. A commercial vacuum sealing machine will help ensure the products stored in your freezer are in tip-top shape prior to being made available to your customers. For home users, it could be a useful purchase though you could achieve similar results by – for example – using airtight containers rather than freezer bags.
Usefulness ratio: 20% home, 80% business.
Vacuum packing saves space
Any commercial kitchen environment knows the importance of managing their frozen food stocks. Overfilling your freezer is a bad idea – you’ll likely encounter issues with air not circulating properly. This affects the freezing temperature and risks, at best, over-soft ice cream and, at worst, food poisoning.
This is where a vacuum food sealer can really help. You’ll likely find yourself with much more freezer space when you vacuum seal your food. You might even be able to get away with a smaller freezer, optimising your available workspace for other kitchen activities. This is something that could be of benefit to both home and business users.
Usefulness ratio: 50% home, 50% business.
Vacuum packing saves money
When you put together all of the above you’ll start to notice that – certainly in a commercial environment – the savings start to add up. The cost of buying a vacuum food sealer will soon pay for itself through savings in energy, space and increased quality. In the ever-competitive world of the catering industry these are the kinds of investments that could give your kitchen the edge.
The savings in a home environment are likely to be less noticeable due to (typically) smaller-scale freezing habits. Though they payoff may well be worth it if you freeze a lot of items and preserving the quality of your food is important to you. There are a number of lower-cost non-commercial machines on the market that might be worth a look.
Usefulness ratio: 20% home, 80% business.
A clear-cut winner
Whilst there are clear benefits to using a vacuum food sealer in a home environment, the most obvious winners are those in the commercial food industry. The financial savings combined with the increased space savings, food quality and food safety, make this a worthwhile investment for the majority of businesses in this sector.