Comparison of transportation bins for whole fresh fish / Comparison of transportation bins for whole fresh fish




Jónas R. Viðarsson, Marvin I. Einarsson

Supported by:

AVS S10015-10 (small project / preliminary project)


Jónas Rúnar Viðarsson

Director of Business and Development

Comparison of transportation bins for whole fresh fish / Comparison of transportation bins for whole fresh fish

The aim of this report was to consider the main advantages and disadvantages of different transport packaging for whole fresh fish (container fish), and whether the choice of packaging affects the quality and value of the catch. The report discusses the export of containerized fish, the value chain of containerized fish, the containers that have been used for the storage and transport of containerized fish, and the factors that must be taken into account when processing, storing and transporting whole fresh fish. In addition, the relationship between price and quality of catch sold on auction markets is briefly discussed. An experiment was carried out with the export of containerized fish in four different types of containers, where it was to be investigated whether there was a difference between the quality, weight loss and the value of the catch. However, this experiment did not provide sufficient reliable information to establish whether the type of transport container affected the aforementioned factors. However, the development that has taken place in the production and sale of tanks shows that more and more companies are choosing smaller tanks, and this should therefore be a good indication that the size of the tanks is important. However, the experiment clearly showed that it would be very difficult to re-box the Icelandic fleet. Icelandic sailors have become accustomed to pots and have little interest in returning; in addition, the installation in trains is today designed for pots. In addition, it is common for Icelandic vessels to catch fish that simply do not fit in the boxes, due to their size. However, it is not ruled out that in some cases, boxes could be a good option for exporting whole fresh fish, such as sun charcoal or "anglerfish tails".

The aim of this report is to identify the main pros and cons of different storage containers for whole fresh fish, and to speculate if the choice of storage containers has an effect on the quality and sales price of the catch. The report includes a discussion on the exports of unprocessed fish to the UK, the value chain of those exports, the storage boxes used and the things that need to be considered during handling, storage and transport of those catches. The report does as well discuss briefly the linkage between quality and price at auction markets. The report also covers an experiment that was made where four types of tubs and boxes were used to transport fish to the UK, in order to study applicability and effects on quality, drip loss and prices. The experiment did not, however, give clear enough results to allow for any conclusions to be made on the issues. The study did however suggest that the applicability of using boxes onboard Icelandic fishing vessels is lacking. Fishermen prefer to use tubs and the onboard setup is made for tubs. The sales agents in the UK did also agree on this, as they are not able to guarantee that using boxes will have any effect on prices. They did however suggest that some high-price species or products would likely attain price premium if transported in small boxes eg lemon sole and monkfish tails.

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