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Fresh and Frozen Products

Fresh Food, Frozen Food or Quick-Frozen Food?

A Question of Great Importance

Expert Advice

"In my experience, many things have changed with time. I believe the evolution in quality of frozen products has been the most important development in the food industry in recent years.

Controlling protein portions also helps stabilize recipe costs, as cooking staff are becoming less and less trained and present in the kitchen.

The objective here is to provide you with a better understanding of the reality of professional cooking, and, above all, to help you choose products that will facilitate your operations and reduce your ingredient costs".

Expert Advice | Chef and Consultant Ian Perreault

Frozen or Quick-Frozen Foods?


means subjecting a product to a temperature of less than -18°C. The temperature is lowered slowly, thus eliminating all biological activity.

Freezing food causes crystals to form, which can alter the product’s quality, like the tenderness of meat, for example. These crystals also inevitably create excess water when the food is being cooked.


is a technique that transforms the water inside food into ice very quickly and at very low temperatures (below -30°C).

Unlike frozen products, quick-frozen products are "put to sleep" more rapidly and are then stabilized at -18°C.

Stop your judgement!

We hear all kinds of criticism about frozen and quick-frozen products.


    • 100% natural preservation method

    • Preserves the food’s taste and nutritional qualities

    • Saves time in the kitchen

    • Less waste: no more forgotten vegetables in the fridge bin

Most fresh vegetables are picked before they're ripe. They can spend several weeks in storage before arriving on grocery store shelves, thus losing their nutritional qualities. Frozen vegetables are picked when ripe and then frozen immediately, which preserves their vitamins and delicate minerals. They're therefore "fresher than fresh"! Frozen vegetables are also often cheaper than fresh products and can save time.

Fresh Products | Mayrand Plus
Fresh Products


  • Meat can be aged
  • Easier setup for kitchen crews
  • Higher product quality
  • Suited to all types of cuisine
  • All chefs love fresh food


  • Price variations
  • Greater losses (shorter shelf-life, more fragile)
  • Product quality deteriorates quickly
  • Complicated delivery and inventory
  • Must be stored in a cold room
  • Products must be rotated often
Frozen Products | Mayrand Plus
Frozen Products


  • Portions can be calculated more easily
  • IQF (Individually Quick-Frozen)
  • Chefs prefer non-bulk products
  • Stable price
  • Allows you to manage variations in customer traffic
  • Facilitates the creation of standard recipes
  • Ensures a stable supply
  • Allows you to manage portion costs


  • Loss of quality and freshness
  • Loss of product weight
  • Impossible to refreeze (except in some cases)
  • Some products contain preservatives
  • Can be time-consuming to ring up in-store
  • Not suitable for all recipes
  • Chefs have unfavourable opinions about them
  • Less flavour
  • May contain brine or nitrites

Other Influential Factors

Type of Restaurant

  • Seating capacity
  • Customer traffic
  • Lunch/dinner
  • Menu prices
  • Seasonal
  • Menu design
  • Tab

Type of Chef

  • Age
  • Culinary training
  • Culinary culture
  • Previous experiences

Type of Equipment

  • Oven
  • Cold room
  • Freezer
  • Sous vide

Type of Cuisine

  • Seasonal
  • Market-based
  • Regional
  • National
  • International

Blackboard of Average Shelf-Life of Frozen and Quick-Frozen Foods

The goal: to reduce losses of quality and time


Organ meat (liver, heart, etc.)

3 to 4 months


6 to 9 months (8 to 12 months according to Health Canada)


1 to 2 months

Beef (steaks, roasts)

6 to 12 months


1 to 2 months

Cooked ham

1 to 2 months


8 to 12 months

Meat sauce for spaghetti

4 to 6 months

Hot dogs

1 to 2 months

Fresh sausage

2 to 3 months

Dried sausage

Cannot be frozen


4 to 8 months (8 to 12 months according to Health Canada)

Cooked meat with sauce

4 months

Cooked meat without sauce

2 to 3 months

Sliced meat sous vide

1 month

Smoked meat, deli meat

1 to 2 months

Ground, cubed or thinly sliced meat

4 months



Chicken and Turkey

Whole raw poultry

10 to 12 months

Raw poultry in pieces or cubes

6 to 9 months

Cooked poultry with sauce

6 months

Cooked poultry without sauce

1 to 3 months

Eggs and Vegetarian Protein

Whole eggs in their shells

Cannot be frozen

Raw egg whites

9 months

Raw egg yolks

4 months


1 to 2 months

Fish and Seafood

Cooked crab

1 month


2 to 4 months

Oysters without their shells

2 to 4 months

Mussels without their shells

3 months

Clams without their shells

3 months


3 months

Fatty fish (salmon, trout, etc.)

3 months

Lean fish (sole, tilapia, etc.)

6 months

Cold-smoked fish

2 months