Drying is our oldest method of food preservation.
For several thousand years people have been preserving dates, figs, apricots, grapes, herbs, potatoes, corn, milk, meat, and fish by drying. Until canning was developed at the end of the 18th century, drying was virtually the only method of food preservation. It is still the most widely used method. Drying is an excellent way to preserve food and solar food dryers are an appropriate food preservation technology for a sustainable world.
Food scientists have found that by reducing the moisture content of food to between 10 and 20%, bacteria, yeast, mold and enzymes are all prevented from spoiling it. The flavor and most of the nutritional value is preserved and concentrated. Vegetables, fruits, meat, fish and herbs can all be dried and can be preserved for several years in many cases. They only have 1/3 to 1/6 the bulk of raw, canned or frozen foods and only weigh about 1/6 that of the fresh food product. They don’t require any special storage equipment and are easy to transport.
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