To some it might seem strange that we use the term “Fresh Frozen” in our marketing. After all, doesn’t “frozen” imply that it isn’t fresh?
Years ago Rodney Stockton, the “Aloe Pioneer“, discovered the healing potential of Aloe. Stockton studied the various species and varieties of species of the many aloes. But he didn’t stop there; Rodney also studied how the various harvesting times and processing techniques affected the quality of the final aloe product.
- A certain variety of Aloe Vera had the highest what he referred to as “medicinal value”. This variety of the Barbadensis Miller Species became known as the “Barbadensis-Miller-Stockton” aloe.
- Plants 5 years old had much higher medicinal properties compared to younger plants.
- Heating the gel of the aloe diminished the quality.
To distribute aloe without pasteurization required some form of preservation; but contaminating his pristine product with chemical preservatives was not an option. So he tested freezing freshly ground aloe filets. He was quite pleased to find that freezing and thawing the same aloe up to 3 times had little effect on the quality of his Aloe Vera. We do not know if he tested beyond freezing it 3 times.
Rodney coined the phrase “Fresh Frozen Aloe Vera” to refer to aloe vera that was harvested, filleted, ground, bottled, and put in the freezer. This occurs all in the shortest time-frame possible.
Rodney had, indeed, created the best aloe vera to drink. To this day, the product he created is the only commercially available 100% Pure Raw Aloe Vera gel in the United States. You might be able to find raw aloe vera freshly made in juice bars and at green markets. But only Stockton Aloe 1 ships pure raw Aloe Vera anywhere in the United States.
WE RE-DEFINED “FRESH FROZEN”
After Rodney Stockton passed away in 2009, Stockton Aloe 1 was formed to carry on his work. All of his exact procedures were scrutinized for areas of improvement. After a thorough evaluation, it was determined that it was possible to chill the freshly ground aloe vera gel faster by passing it through a “heat transfer” system. The newly installed system uses the latest technology to remove heat from the aloe prior to going into the freezer.
The way this works is quite simple: Ten pipes are arranged inside a 10 foot long canister. The pipes have U-turns at the ends. The aloe vera is passed through the 100 feet of thin stainless steel pipe. The chamber that contains these pipes is a separate sealed container that gets filled with circulating liquid maintained at the desired cold temperature by a computer controlled chiller. As the aloe passes through the long cold stainless steel pipes, the heat is transferred out of the aloe.
Question: How do you clean inside the long stainless steel pipes?
Answer: The end caps are removable to allow for deep cleaning with long pipe cleaners and sanitizer. The end caps are replaced and hot water is passed through to thoroughly rinse the inside of the pipes.
While we recognized that “Fresh Frozen” was the best way to preserve raw aloe, we realized that we could get the aloe frozen in the same day! The heat transfer system gets the fresh aloe vera gel to near freezing immediately prior to going into the freezer. That is, the gel is taken from the temperature of the fields, which might be in the 90’s F to below 50 degrees Fahrenheit in one minute. From there it goes into a freezer container and is transported to South Florida for distribution.
Some might argue that purchasing fresh aloe vera leaves from the grocery store and hand filleting produces a better aloe vera to drink. Find out more about Filleting Aloe Vera.
Something to think about: “What other options are there for preserving aloe vera?“