Reports

Sub chilling of fish

Published:

17/07/2017

Authors:

Gunnar Þórðarson, Sigurjón Arason, Magnea Karlsdóttir

Supported by:

Technology Development Fund

contact

Gunnar Þórðarson

Regional Manager

gunnar.thordarson@matis.is

Sub chilling of fish

The aim of the project was to utilize the knowledge of supercooling of fish that has been developed in laboratories in recent decades; industrialize the concept and develop methods and equipment to control the cooling. It is important to cool the raw material below the freezing point or just below the temperature at which the first ice crystals form in the fish species in question, fast enough so that large crystals do not form in the muscles and cause cell damage. It is important to control the cooling correctly as well as to maintain a supercooled condition during storage and transport, but fluctuations in temperature can cause quality deterioration. The results of research show that ice-free transport and storage of super-chilled fish is a realistic solution that reduces the cost of fishing and processing as well as reducing the cost of transport and significantly reducing the footprint of fresh fish production. Fresh salmon has been transported ice-free but super-chilled for shorter and longer distances and stored for a week before processing with excellent results. In connection with the project, supercooling has been used on a large scale in Sauðárkrókur, where the trawler Málmey SK 1 has landed over 15 thousand tonnes in the past two years of supercooled catch and thus not used ice on board or for storage for production in fish processing.

The project objective was to utilize knowledge of sub chilling of fish developed in laboratories for the past decades; and to industrialize the concept and to develop methods and means for centralizing the process. The control of the chilling process is important, to chill raw material sufficiently without freeze out more than 20% of its water and without developing large ice crystals in the muscles. It is also important to keep storage temperature under control and stable and for the same reason temperature fluctuation can cause growth of ice crystals in the muscle. Based on results obtained in present project it can be concluded that sub chilling provides opportunities to use ice-free value chain for fresh fish, lowering cost of production, logistic and considerably the carbon footprint for the final products. Fresh salmon without any external refrigerant (ice) has been transported for long distance, by trucks and airplanes, and stored for long time with acceptable results. The trawler used in this project has landed over 15 thousand tonnes of sub chilled fish for the last two years without using any ice for chilling and storage. The fish is stored in the fish plant and processed without using any ice preservation.

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Reports

Life Cycle Assessment on fresh Icelandic cod loins

Published:

01/09/2014

Authors:

Birgir Örn Smárason, Jónas R. Viðarsson, Gunnar Þórðarson, Lilja Magnúsdóttir

Supported by:

AVS (R13 042‐13)

contact

Birgir Örn Smárason

Group Leader

birgir@matis.is

Life Cycle Assessment on fresh Icelandic cod loins

With growing human population and increased fish consumption, the world's fisheries are not only facing the challenge of harvesting fish stocks in a sustainable manner, but also to limit the environmental impacts along the entire value chain. The fishing industry, like all other industries, contributes to global warming and other environmental impacts with consequent marine ecosystem deterioration. Environmentally responsible producers, distributors, retailers and consumers recognize this and are actively engaged in mapping the environmental impacts of their products and constantly looking for ways to limit the effects. In this project a group of Icelandic researchers and suppliers of fresh Icelandic cod loins carried out Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) within selected value chains. The results were compared with similar research on competing products and potentials for improvements identified. The project included LCA of fresh cod loins sold in the UK and Switzerland from three bottom trawlers and four long‐ liners. The results show that fishing gear has considerable impact on carbon footprint values with numbers ranging from 0.3 to 1.1 kg CO2eq / kg product. The catching phase impacts is however dominated by the transport phase, where transport by air contributes to over 60% of the total CO2 emissions within the chain. Interestingly, transport by sea to the UK emits even less CO2 than domestic transport. Minimizing the carbon footprint, and environmental impacts in general, associated with the provision of seafood can make a potentially important contribution to climate change control. Favoring low impact fishing gear and transportation can lead to reduction in CO2 emissions, but that is not always practical or even applicable due to the limited availability of sea freight alternatives, time constrains, quality issues and other factors. When comparing the results with other similar results for competing products it is evident that fresh Icelandic cod loins have moderate CO2 emissions.

Along with high population growth and increased fish consumption, the global fisheries sector now faces the important task of utilizing fish stocks sustainably at the same time as they need to minimize all the environmental impact of fishing, processing, transport and other links in the value chain. The fishing industry, like any other industry, contributes to global warming and also has a number of other environmental impacts that have a detrimental effect on the marine environment. Companies that want to show social and environmental responsibility in their operations are fully aware of this and therefore seek to better monitor the environmental impact of their production and look for ways to reduce it. With this in mind, a group of Icelandic researchers, fisheries companies and sales and distributors joined forces to carry out an LCA analysis of selected value chains of fresh cod necks. The results were then compared with the results of comparable studies that have been conducted on competitive products, as well as ways to reduce the environmental impact within the aforementioned value chains were examined. The study included fresh Icelandic cod necks sold in the UK and Switzerland. The saddles were made from the catch of three trawlers and four longliners. The results show that the type of fishing gear has a great influence on the footprint / carbon footprint of the products, as the longliners came out considerably better than the trawlers. The footprint of individual vessels in the study ranged from 0.3 to 1.1 kg CO2eq / kg product, which must be considered quite low compared to previous studies. When it comes to looking at the entire value chain, however, it is the transport component or mode of transport that is by far the most important, i.e. that part is responsible for over 60% of the footprint when the product is exported by air. If, on the other hand, it is exported by ship, the footprint of the transport part will be very small and then domestic transport will become more important than the transport across the sea. Minimizing the environmental impact of fishing, processing and distributing marine products can make a significant contribution to the fight against global warming. By choosing fishing methods and modes of transport with regard to the footprint, it is possible to significantly reduce carbon emissions, but it must also be borne in mind that it is not always possible or realistic to choose only the options with the lowest footprint. The results of this study and a comparison with the results of comparable studies show that fresh Icelandic cod fillets that have been marketed in the UK and Switzerland have a modest footprint and are fully competitive with other fish products or animal proteins.

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Reports

Use of electricity for drying fishmeal / Electric drying of fish meal

Published:

01/01/2013

Authors:

Magnús Valgeir Gíslason, Gunnar Pálsson, Björn Margeirsson, Sigurjón Arason

Supported by:

AVS Fisheries Research Fund (R10 084‐10)

contact

Sigurjón Arason

Chief Engineer

sigurjon.arason@matis.is

Use of electricity for drying fishmeal / Electric drying of fish meal

The fishmeal industry is an important industry and has been technologically advanced in recent years. High energy is used in the production of products. In order to gain a better grasp of energy efficiency in the process, an energy and mass flow model is set up for the processing of different raw materials and at the same time a better overview of the processing cycle is obtained. The model also helps to make it easier to influence the quality of fishmeal products, through process control. The main goal of the project is to control energy consumption in the production process and especially during drying and to develop electric drying equipment for air dryers. The drying is the last stage of processing in the circuit and the waste dryer from drying is then used later in the circuit. The aim of the project is to use electricity to heat air for drying fishmeal in an efficient way. In this way, it would be possible to achieve the goal of the fisheries sector to utilize only domestic energy in the production of fishmeal, significantly reduce the import of oil for land processing and significantly reduce the formation of footprints. Measurements in the production process were performed for four types of raw materials, to estimate material flows through the factory. Pressure drop over oil heating equipment was measured and is much higher compared to electric heating equipment. The electric heating equipment has proven successful in HB Grandi Vopnafjörður's fishmeal factory, in terms of energy source, energy efficiency, control and maintenance.

The fish meal industry is an important sector and has applied technology in recent years. Fish meal processing is an energy intensive process. For better control of energy utilization in the process energy‐ and mass flow model was set up for processing different raw material, and simultaneously a better overview for the process. The model is a good tool to have influence on the quality of the fish meal products. The main aim of the project was to control energy usage specially for the drying and to develop electric air heating equipment. The drying is the last step in the process and waste heat is utilized on previous stages in the process. The aim of the project is to utilize electricity to heat air for drying fish meal in a cost effective way. By contrast it would be possible to reach the goal for the Icelandic marine sector to utilize exclusively domestic renewable energy for fish meal processing, reduce imports of oil for shore processing and reduce carbon footprint. Measurements in the process were carried out for four kinds of raw material, for evaluation of mass flow through the process. Pressure drop over the oil air heating equipment was measured higher than for an electric air heater. It has turned out that the electric air heater has proved its worth in HB Grandi fish meal factory in Vopnafjordur, in terms of energy source, energy utilization, controlling and maintenance.  

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