Clarence Birdseye

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Clarence Frank Birdseye II
BirthplaceBrooklyn, New York City, US
Known for Frozen food

Birdseye, Clarence

Birdseye, Clarence, 1886–1956, American inventor and founder of the frozen food industry, b. Brooklyn, N.Y., studied at Amherst College. From 1910 he worked as a naturalist, and in 1912 he went to Labrador on a fur-trading expedition. After he returned to the United States in 1916, he began experimenting with freezing foods, aiming at commercial application. He developed a method for freezing fish and in 1924 he was one of the founders of the General Seafood Company, which began manufacturing various fast-frozen food products. In 1929 the company was bought by the Postum Company (later the General Foods Corp.) for $22 million. By 1949, Birdseye had perfected the anhydrous freezing process, reducing the time needed for the operation from 18 hr to 11-2 hr. A prolific inventor, he held more than 200 patents.


See biography by M. Kurlansky (2012).

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Birdseye, Clarence (“Bob”)

(1886–1956) inventor, food processor; born in Brooklyn, N.Y. He was interested in taxidermy as a child, and he took a cooking course in high school. After briefly attending Amherst College, he worked as a field naturalist for the Biological Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (1910–12) before going to Labrador where he engaged in the fur trade (1912–17). Observing how well the natives preserved fish and other foods by freezing them, he experimented with the quick-freezing of foods in the harsh winters there. Back in Gloucester, Mass., he perfected his quick-freezing and packaging process in the 1920s, but it would be the 1940s before the name Birds Eye became a household word through the frozen food firm that he established (in 1927), the General Foods Company.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.
References in periodicals archive ?
I am not the world's best salesman, but I am intensely curious about things which I see around me, and this curiosity, combined with a willingness to assume risks, has been responsible for such success and satisfaction that I have achieved in life." Such was Clarence Birdseye's humble personal insight.
government, Brooklyn, N.Y.-born Clarence Birdseye observed that freshly caught fish froze almost immediately when placed on the ice and exposed to the frigid air.
The American inventor Clarence Birdseye (1886-1956) poineered the production of quick-frozen foods.
He tells the story, for example, of how it took Clarence Birdseye 17 years to turn a profit on frozen foods, of how Fred and Louis Rukheim turned 1 of 600 competing carmel popcorn concoctions into a best seller by putting a prize in every box of Cracker Jack, and how Aunt Jemima was going bankrupt until a miller brought 20 million people into her "parlor" at the 1893 World's Fair.
Like Letterman, Owen dishes out plenty of mock-serious commentary: "Clarence Birdseye's estimable achievements notwithstanding, the early history of frozen food was not an unbroken chain of triumphs...
1930: Clarence Birdseye (pictured) marketed the first frozen foods in Massachusetts.
A Alfred Ross B Clarence Birdseye C Marty Lyons D Wilbur Walls II QUESTION 5 - for 5 points: Sacramento is the capital of which US state?
Chilled also tells the story of how Captain Birdseye became the mascot for the frozen food brand that was created by Clarence Birdseye.
Then when American, Clarence Birdseye, built the first 'double belt contact freezer' in 1928, his idea was to fast freeze food by placing it between two intensely cold plates.
Consider what the freezer aisle would be today had Clarence Birdseye not hammered out a way to flash-freeze and package perishable back in the early 1900s.
That was the year Clarence Birdseye was granted patents covering several aspects of the food freezing processes, including a package and a double-plate freezer patent.

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