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Reply #40: Agreed, within limits. [View All]

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politicat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-04-09 07:46 PM
Response to Reply #31
40. Agreed, within limits.
Cellaring has been in use for thousands of years, but has a lot of variables. Ice cellaring has been in use for a few centuries, but requires surplus labor, so is not commonly available. Cellars themselves require a significant investment in labor, so weren't available to the poor, the recently arrived (in the case of the westward migration) or those on flood plains.

As for shipping ice, that really starts with the advent of the functional railroad, so mid 19th century. Before that, there were a few attempts to pack ice for shipment to places like India, but they were mostly "demonstration projects", not fully functional trade. (They didn't make enough money.)

And right on food preservation, and on the dangers of food poisoning, but the question currently hot in historical epidemiology is how much food-borne illness really existed. Grazed meats are less likely to carry the nastier e. coli strains, shigella and listeria are less common... And of course, being exposed to local bacteria means people end up with iron-clad immune systems, if they reach 5 years old... (and lots didn't.)
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