Fresh Produce – what is required to avoid typical cold room food spoilage?

Polar Africa has long been a proponent of storing fresh produce in cold storage:

  • at the correct ambient temperature (and by association core temperature as well) depending on the type of fresh produce – when stock is mixed the lower recommended temperature should be the set point

  • at a constant relative humidity of 90% (as that is the same amount of moisture fresh produce contains)

  • free of ethylene (or food spoilage) gasses

  • free of airborne bacteria, spores, moulds, and yeasts

In such an environment the qualitative condition of fresh produce (depending on the quality/condition/grade when received) will be retained far longer than usual – from 3 to 5 days and longer on average.

Cold rooms cannot maintain or attain any of the foregoing parameters (not even brand-new refrigeration units).

The only way the foregoing ideal parameters can be achieved is to:

  1. install an industrial humidifier to maintain humidity at 90%
  2. install scrubbers to remove ethylene, airborne bacteria, sports mounds, and yeasts

Polar Africa has over the past few months installed the foregoing solution in two fresh produce cold rooms of one the largest independent retailers in KZN and the results (have predictably) been excellent.

Go to to view video of humidifier and scrubbers in a fresh produce cold room.