NASA produced a variety of freeze-dried foods for astronaut consumption throughout the Apollo Missions. The process of freeze-drying is fairly simple: Food is brought to an extremely low temperature in a vacuum, vaporizing water molecules in the food and leaving it completely dehydrated and preserved. In 1975, American Outdoors Products, Inc. created Astronaut Foods, after being approached by the NASA Ames Research Center gift shop asking them to replicate the NASA advanced freeze-drying process to create ice cream that could be sold in the NASA Space Center gift shops nationwide. In the early days, American Outdoors Products would freeze huge tubs of ice cream all at once, then a team of workers would break it up with ice picks and package these portions of it for sale. Since then, Astronaut Foods has become a novelty staple in gift shops and museums around the globe, providing a variety of tasty freeze-dried treats including cheese, ice cream, and fruit. Along with providing fun and unique snacks, American Outdoors Products Inc. is dedicated to advancing space research. They donate a portion of their profits to organizations that pioneer education, technology, research, and space exploration. “Our foods are fun, and our mission is serious: We’re dedicated to supporting people and organizations whose goal it is to push the boundaries of space exploration and discovery.” —Astronaut Foods.
Learn more and get some delicious freeze-dried treats at https://astronautfoods.com/