For a while, I have wanted to interview the owners of some of the various food distributors to learn about their products. So this is my first attempt. I sent these questions to Freezedryguy and here are his answers. In the future I will sent similar question to many of the other foods suppliers. If any of you are distributors and want to be interviewed let me know.
How long have you been in the food business?
FDG 1 month short of 44 years in the food storage business
What is your main motivation for staying in business?
FDG I wanted to assist others to become better prepared to face hard times.
What is your military background?
FDG 26 years overall; Army SF, and the balance of my career as a Combat Engineer
Is mountain House the only food that you sell?
FDG No, Mountain House is my primary product but I also have a limited variety of my own products under the Pack Away label such as Freeze Dried Pineapple, Dehydrated Milk, Butter, Cheese, Peppers, and Dehydrated Pinto and Black Beans.
Why do you like Mountain House Foods?
FDG Mountain House pioneered the Freeze drying industry, are the oldest and largest Freeze Dried food company in the world and their products have the best taste levels and the longest proven shelf life of any product out there; all without the use of chemical preservatives. Additionally, they possess the finest business ethic I have ever experienced.
Do the other foods that you sell maintain the same standards as Mountain House?
FDG We have a Freeze Dried Pineapple that we market under our own Pack Away Foods brand and the quality of this item is right up there with the Pineapple Mountain House used to Freeze Dry many years ago. They also do not produce a Dehydrated line as we do under the Pack away line such as dairy items, various beans like pintos, black beans, chili beans and Bell Peppers but we adhere to the same high oxygen removal standards that Mountain House does which will provide some of the longest storing foods available..
What O2 level do you recommend in foods?
FDG The lower the better but definitely well under 5% for good results; less than 2% is exceptional. Actually Mountain achieves well below 1% and much closer to 0%; as Pack Away does.
Why doesn’t nitrogen flush work?
FDG The nitrogen back flush is a good method, whereas a perfect vacuum is drawn on the pouch or can, then back flushed with oxygen to arrive at the less than 2% residual oxygen level is achieved.
It is the nitrogen flush where nitrogen is merely blown into the container that can be questionable. In independent testing, this method has often produced residual oxygen levels that ran from around to 5% to 15% and beyond remaining oxygen levels.
What is the difference between the methods used by Mountain House for nitrogen compared to nitrogen flush?
FDGThe method Mountain House used for decades (which was even then the highest in the industry) was the nitrogen back flush but in later years, they went to an absorber method that achieved the even higher standards of oxygen removal they provide today.
What about Pack Away Foods, do they maintain the same high standards that Mountain House does?
FDG Yes, we use the same oxygen removal method they use.
Are there Chinese foods in the products you sell?
FDG I have a great aversion to selling foods from China for several reasons but one example is of the toxic contamination issues such as melamine that we experienced a few years ago here in the U. S. I do not accept foods from Mexico due to their poor track record in many cases.
What about other countries?
FDG I have no problem with other countries in Central or South America as they produce some of the finest fruits and vegetables grown in some of the richest soil available anywhere.
What would you warn consumers to look for in purchasing foods?
FDG Find a vendor who has been in the business for a long time. Ask what the residual oxygen levels are. I would absolutely require less that 5% residual oxygen; 2% would be very good and 1% would be ideal such as we provide. Remember, with all other things being equal, the lower the oxygen levels the longer the shelf life.
Why do you think people should buy long-term storage foods?
FDG It should be self evident; we are in a cycle of disastrous weather patterns that our country has never experienced. Drought is on the increase and food production is down; just look at the crisis taking place in the San Joaquin Valley of California, the largest producer of fruits and nuts in the United States. The economy is still not stable and many knowledgeable feel the worse to come. What better investment these days can we make than to put aside a few months of good tasting, highly nutritious, long storing foods that you only have to add hot or cold water to, to have an excellent meal..
Why should people buy form you?
FDG We are really, really nice people? (NO PROBABLY NOT GOOD ENOUGH!) We carry the finest, longest storing foods with a proven track record you can buy. Our Preparedness Counselors are highly knowledgeable, courteous, honest and patient. We treat every customer as if we were providing a food program for our own children.
Freeze Dry Guy