Each time you breathe in and out you take in Oxygen and release Carbon Dioxide or CO2 into the atmosphere. This precious gas has many uses within industry such as keeping food fresh during transport, carbonating drinks, and extending shelf life on certain foods. Despite the abundance of CO2 gas it is curiously difficult to pin down.
In normal times fertiliser production has proven to be a great source of CO2, during the manufacturing process CO2 is given off as a by-product and captured for industrial use. Unfortunately the recent surge in energy prices has meant that 2 key fertiliser factories in Cheshire and Teeside have stopped work. According to a recent BBC report from September 2021, this has lead to a cut of 60% in the UK’s food-grade carbon dioxide supply.
The CO2 shortage is further compounded as we approach the festive season, with demand in the food and drink industry soaring. According to an article in the daily record, most meat companies are about six weeks behind their Christmas production schedules.
Enter Nitrogen Gas. Nitrogen (N2) is an excellent alternative to CO2. Nitrogen is an inert gas, this means it will not react with prepared food materials. Nitrogen gas can be used as an alternative in food packaging, brewing and wine making.