Clarence Frank Birdseye II (December 9, 1886 - October 7, 1956) was an American inventor who is considered the founder of the modern frozen food industry.

Birdseye was born in Brooklyn in New York City. He became interested in food preservation by freezing while working as a field naturalist for the United States government in Labrador, Canada, between 1912-1915. He was working to pay for his education as a biology major at Amherst College. He was taught by the Inuit how to ice fish under very thick ice. In -40°C weather, he discovered that the fish he caught froze almost instantly, and when thawed, tasted fresh. He knew immediately that the frozen seafood sold in New York was of lower quality than the frozen fish of Labrador.

Conventional freezing methods of the time were commonly done at higher temperatures, and thus the freezing occurred much more slowly, giving ice crystals more time to grow. We now know that fast freezing produces smaller ice crystals, which cause less damage to the tissue structure.

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