AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND — On Dec. 19, The Food Drying Co. launched its drying hub network initiative. The company’s network of drying hubs will offer human and animal food processors premium vacuum drying capabilities on a leasing basis.

Supported by the Ministry of Primary Industries, The Factory, Callaghan Innovation and advisors from Deloitte, Tompkins Wake and EverEdge Global IP, The Food Drying Co. plans to raise funding to enable it to build its first hub in Waikato, New Zealand.

The Food Drying Co. will provide growers, farmers, ingredient businesses, co-ops, investors, upcyclers and governments premium vacuum drying abilities. According to the company, drying can help preserve nutrients, add value and extend the longevity of food storage. The drying hub network will operate with a small footprint, boasting low transport costs and nearly zero biosecurity issues.

“We can now transport provenance to the discerning consumer at a price not constrained by traditional logistics and handling,” said Richard Guy, founder and chief executive officer of The Food Drying Co.

The Food Drying Co.'s drying hubsSource: The Food Drying Co. Ltd

The company plans to purchase vacuum drying technology and other equipment from DriedFresh Ltd. All of the hubs will use state-of-the-art OVDMA™ dryers from DriedFresh and will feature a technology roadmap developed and contracted out to Callaghan Innovation.

The hubs can be used to dry animal, seafood and plant materials, including fruits, vegetables and roots.

“A toll drying facility to service the premium end of dried foods has to have the best vacuum drying technology — the options are limited,” Guy said on the company’s plans to purchase OVDMA™ dryers.

The Food Drying Co.’s hubs will focus on food security, preserving the nutritional value of ingredients and food products to help prevent food waste. The hubs will operate on a time-slot basis, allowing producers to pre-pay for 18 hours of drying time.

Alongside drying capabilities, the hubs will also provide biological, environmental and compound data to customers via algorithms and sensors within the dryers. The company will also offer a database of compounds on a subscription basis to slot holders and other third parties, including institutes, universities and consultancy firms, to help advance the drying process.

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