Due to its exceptional nutritional value, gluten-free nature, quinoa became a tasty alternative to rice and meat and has captured the attention of consumers all around the world. Quinoa has become a true foodie Cinderella story, being used in cereal bars, salads, and all the way to Michelin-starred restaurants.
The “quinoa boom” is explained mainly by its appeal in healthy and vegetarian diets - quinoa has remarkable high content of proteins, fiber, iron, calcium and all nine essential amino acids, making it a complete protein. Quinoa market has a buyer-driven development, and the FAO data shows that all big markets are quickly increasing their imports. Europe particularly is very loyal to the consumption of this product even when the prices have increased due to vegetarian consumers who prefer this plant-protein. According to UN, quinoa will be one of the products to tackle the already settled protein-crisis, in a meat-consuming world with a growing population.
The increasing demand from ready-meals sector, salad bars, frozen sections in the supermarkets and HoReCa – has emerged into the need to offer this super product in a new shape – IQF frozen. IQF frozen quinoa is much more convenient, as its already cooked and ready to be used in a dish.
Food processors indicate that the demand for IQF quinoa is growing constantly but it’s not so easy to provide a truly high-quality product. The standard processing usually consists of blanching, chilling and IQF freezing, and each step must be done in the right way for a premium product.
When it comes to processing quinoa – the precise timing is the decisive element. Too much blanching – will form lumps, too little blanching – will lead to a light and uncooked product, too slow chilling – you get an overcooked product.
With the OctoFrost IQF Processing Line, the elements of temperature and time are precisely set and respected. The processor can set 2-temperature zones in the OctoFrost IF Blancher if so desired, with precise blanching temperatures in each blanching stage which translates into a perfectly blanched quinoa.
The OctoFrost IF Chiller immediately halts the blanching process, avoiding overcooking. This is possible due to the impingement technology and the rainshower system developed by OctoFrost.
And finally, the IQF freezing in the OctoFrost IQF tunnel, is designed to create a controlled airflow which will gently fluidize quinoa without overblow.
All in all, the OctoFrost IQF Processing Line is offering quinoa processors a line which achieves high yield, an energy efficient process, with a reliable food safety and a premium IQF quinoa as a result. Feel free to ask for more information from the OctoFrost experts on processing IQF quinoa at firstname.lastname@example.org