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Government Film Shows Role of Dehydration in World War II

The 1943 film “Food for Fighters” portrays dehydration technology as a godsend for the American military and public alike.

As World War II got underway, the United States turned to food scientists, technologists, and engineers to reimagine how food was produced, packaged, and consumed. Soldiers needed food products that could be transported cheaply and easily, withstand the elements, and provide adequate nutrition.

This 1943 film produced by the US Office of War Information showcases the government’s efforts to solve some of these challenges with technology and new techniques. One particular area the filmmakers focus on is dehydration technology. In a recent episode of Powder & Bulk Solids’ podcast series, Particulate Matters, author Anastacia Marx de Salcedo talks about how a USDA food scientist used dehydration during the war to create one of the world’s most popular food ingredients, cheese powder.

Check out this film to see the numerous innovations spawned by the war effort, some of which have had a lasting impact on the food industry.

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