Reports

Comparison of packing of fresh fish products in boxes and pots for export by ship / Packing of fresh fish products in boxes and tubs intended for sea transport

Published:

01/07/2016

Authors:

Magnea G. Karlsdóttir, Ásgeir Jónsson, Gunnar Þórðarson, Björn Margeirsson, Sigurjón Arason, Aðalheiður Ólafsdóttir, Þorsteinn Ingi Víglundsson

Supported by:

AVS Fisheries Research Fund (R 034‐14)

contact

Gunnar Þórðarson

Regional Manager

gunnar.thordarson@matis.is

Comparison of packing of fresh fish products in boxes and pots for export by ship / Packing of fresh fish products in boxes and tubs intended for sea transport

The aim of the study was to find the best and most cost-effective method of packing fresh fish products for shipping with a view to maximizing the shelf life of a product, which is one of the key factors in the marketing of fresh fish products. Experiments were carried out with the transport of fresh fish products in containers with ice scrapers and compared with the transport in foam plastic boxes with regard to temperature control, product quality and transport costs. Different product groups were compared that were packed in different packaging and stored at different storage temperatures. The purpose of these experiments was to simulate the environmental conditions during the transport of fresh fish products, with a view to evaluating the effect of pre-cooling before packaging and packaging methods on the shelf life of the products. The results clearly indicate that refrigeration of products before packaging as well as low and stable storage temperatures are among the most important factors that increase the shelf life of fresh fish products. Different packaging solutions also affected the shelf life of fresh fish products, although the effect was not as decisive as the effect of temperature. The results indicate an increased likelihood of longer shelf life if fresh fish products are packed in tanks with sub-chilled sludge compared to traditional packaging in a foam plastic box with ice. To estimate the amount of ice scraper required to maintain an acceptable temperature, a heat transfer model was developed. An economic analysis of different packaging and transport was carried out in the project and this work shows significant savings with the use of tanks for transporting fresh fish products in comparison with foam plastic boxes. Pots can replace a foam plastic box to a considerable extent and be a cost-effective option for some companies. The economic analysis showed that larger parties could take advantage of this method, as they can fill entire containers for export. But the method is no less useful for smaller processes, which do not have the capacity to make large investments in equipment to ensure adequate cooling for the packaging of products for export of fresh raw materials. The results are a good contribution to discussions about fresh fish products in foreign markets.

The goal of the study was to find the best and most efficient method of packaging fresh fish for sea transport with the aim of maximizing the storage life of the product, which is a key element in the marketing of fresh fish. Experiments were made with the transport of fresh fish in tubs with slurry ice and compared with transport in expanded polystyrene boxes with regard to temperature control, product quality and shipping cost. Different product groups were compared, using different temperature conditions and packing methods to find the best outcome for fresh fish quality and storage life. Experimental results clearly indicate that the pre ‐ cooling for packaging and low and stable storage temperature play a major factor to maximize storage life of fresh fish products. Different packaging solutions are also a factor, though the effect was not as dramatic as the effects of temperature. The results indicate an increased likelihood of extended shelf life if fresh fish is packed in a tub with a slurry ice compared to traditional packaging in expanded polystyrene boxes with ice. In order to estimate the necessary amount of slurry ice to maintain acceptable temperature, a thermal model was developed. Economic analysis of different packaging and transport was also carried out and the results showed substantial savings with the use of tubs for the transport of fresh fish products in comparison with the styrofoam boxes.

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Reports

Effects of bleeding methods on the quality and storage life of cod and saithe products

Published:

01/02/2014

Authors:

Magnea G. Karlsdóttir, Nguyen Van Minh, Sigurjón Arason, Aðalheiður Ólafsdóttir, Paulina E. Romotowska, Arnjótur B. Bergsson, Stefán Björnsson

Supported by:

AVS (R 11 087‐11)

contact

Sigurjón Arason

Chief Engineer

sigurjon.arason@matis.is

Effects of bleeding methods on the quality and storage life of cod and saithe products

The aim of the project was to examine the effect of different bleeding methods on the quality and shelf life of different cod and saithe products. By identifying ideal conditions for bleeding, gutting and bleeding, it is possible to prevent product defects due to blood and at the same time increase the stability of the products in transport and storage. The fish were either bloodied in the hands and in the machine. Bleeding took place in slush or sea and the effects of different bleeding times were examined. The effect of waiting time on tires before bleeding was also assessed, as well as bleeding and gutting the fish in one step or two steps (gutting performed after bleeding). The products studied in this project were chilled and frozen cod and saithe products, as well as salted cod products. Of the variables studied in this project, their importance differed in terms of which fish species were involved and what the final product was. When comparing comparable sample groups of cod and saithe, it is seen that different conditions are suitable for each species. This supports the theory that it is probably not possible to transfer the best bleeding method of cod to saithe and vice versa. Bleeding time and type of bleeding agent (sludge vs. seawater) had a decisive effect on the stability of the cod and saithe products examined. Cod products, both chilled and frozen, from raw material soaked in sludge generally resulted in improved quality and stability compared to if soaked in seawater. In contrast to cod, the bleeding of saithe into the sea generally resulted in a stable end product. The way the fish were bled and gutted also had a decisive effect on the final products. In the case of frozen cod products, raw and gutted raw material in one step generally yielded a more stable product compared to raw material that was gutted after bleeding had occurred (two steps). Salted products, on the other hand, were much more stable in storage if the raw material was gutted after bleeding. Different results were also obtained for saithe depending on the final product involved. Bleeding and gutting of saithe in a machine had a positive effect on the shelf life of chilled products compared to if made by hand. Machine bleeding and gutting, on the other hand, resulted in a much more unstable product in the cold. The results of the project show that the effects of different bleeding methods are quite dependent on the raw material as well as the final product involved.

The main objective of the project was to study the effects of different bleeding methods on quality and storage life of various cod and saithe products. Products defects due to blood residues can be prevented by optimizing bleeding protocols, and hence increase the quality and storage life of the products. For this, fishes were either bled and gutted by hand or by machine. The bleeding (blood draining) was carried out with seawater or slurry ice, and the effects of different bleeding times in the tanks were also investigated. Moreover, the effects of waiting time (on deck) before bleeding, as well as the procedure of bleeding technique (bleeding and gutting in one procedure vs. gutting after blood draining) were investigated. The various products evaluated were chilled and frozen cod and saithe products, and salted cod products. The importance of the different parameters investigated in this project varied considerably with regard to fish species and the final products. Comparison of parallel treatments groups of cod and saithe demonstrated that optimum bleeding procedures are different for each species. Waiting time on deck and bleeding media (slurry ice vs. seawater) significantly affected the storage life of the cod and saithe products. Cod products, both chilled and frozen, from fish bled in slurry ice generally resulted in improved quality and storage life compared to fish bled in seawater. In contrast to cod, bleeding or saithe in seawater resulted however in more stable products. The procedure during bleeding and gutting also had great impact on the storage life of the various products studied. Shorter storage life of salted cod products was generally observed when the raw material was bled and gutted in one step compared to when gutting was performed after bleeding (two steps). Rather conflicting results were, however, observed for saithe and were depending on the type of final product. Bleeding and gutting of saithe by machine improved the storage life of chilled products compared to when the saithe was bled and gutted by hand. The machine procedure had, however, negative effects on the storage life of the frozen saithe products. Overall, the results of this project indicate that the effects of different bleeding methods are highly relative to fish species as well as the final product of interest.

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Reports

Superchilled Round Fish - Final Report / Supercilled Whole Fish - Final Report

Published:

01/03/2013

Authors:

Björn Margeirsson, Valur Oddgeir Bjarnason, Sigurjón Arason

Supported by:

AVS Fisheries Research Fund (R 11 062‐11)

contact

Sigurjón Arason

Chief Engineer

sigurjon.arason@matis.is

Superchilled Round Fish - Final Report / Supercilled Whole Fish - Final Report

The main objective of the project "Super-chilled whole fish - for death solidification", which began in July 2011, was to investigate whether super-cooling of whole fish on board a fishing vessel could extend the shelf life and increase the quality of the products. Appropriate temperature and time settings for red and touch refrigerators were sought with four refrigeration experiments and the best settings were used to supercool whole fish in a shelf life experiment. The results of a shelf life test indicate that supercooled processing of whole cod can extend its shelf life by two days. According to sensory evaluation, however, there was little difference in the shelf life of different fillet groups. Shelf life was estimated at 16-18 days, which is quite a long time for cod fillets. However, the freshness period of the experimental group with super-chilled fillets of super-chilled whole fish seemed to be somewhat longer than the other groups. As with whole cod, there was little difference between the fillet groups in terms of microbial growth, chemical and physical properties. Limited differences between experimental groups can possibly be explained by stable and supercooled storage conditions. With this in mind, it is recommended to carry out another similar experiment, simulating more typical environmental temperature processes in the transport of fresh fish products (0–4 ° C) than in this experiment (–1.4 to –1.2 ° C). The results of computerized thermodynamics and hydrology modeling indicate that such models could be used for the continuous design of red and touch chillers for whole fish.

The main aim of the R&D project "Superchilled round fish - pre ‐ rigor", which was initiated in July 2011, was to investigate whether superchilled processing of whole fish on ‐ board fishing ships could increase product quality and prolong storage life. The appropriate temperature and time settings for the superchilling equipment were studied in four cooling trials and the best settings applied when preparing samples for a storage life study. The results from the storage life study indicate that superchilled processing of whole cod can extend storage life by two days. However, differences in sensory scores between the fillet groups were small. Storage life was estimated between 16 and 18 days which is quite long storage life for cod fillets. However, the group with superchilled fillets from superchilled whole fish seemed to retain freshness a little longer than other groups. As in case of the whole cod, the differences in bacterial count, chemical and physical properties between the fillet groups were small. Very similar fish temperatures between both the whole fish and the fillet groups resulting from the superchilled storage conditions applied may be the main reason for the small differences obtained. Thus, another study with more common temperature conditions during transport and storage of fresh fish (chilled but not superchilled) should be performed. The results obtained in this study show that CFD modeling of fluid flow and heat transfer is a realistic and functional tool to simulate superchilling of whole fish in a CBC ‐ cooler. In future work CFD modeling can be used to determine optimal values for parameters such as holding time, chilling temperature and air velocity. 

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Reports

Comparison of transport modes and packaging methods for fresh fish products - storage life study and life cycle assessment

Published:

01/10/2012

Authors:

Björn Margeirsson, Birgir Örn Smárason, Gunnar Þórðarson, Aðalheiður Ólafsdóttir, Eyjólfur Reynisson, Óðinn Gestsson, Emilía Martinsdóttir, Sigurjón Arason

Supported by:

AtVest (Atvinnuþróunarfélag Vestfjarði)

contact

Birgir Örn Smárason

Group Leader

birgir@matis.is

Comparison of transport modes and packaging methods for fresh fish products - storage life study and life cycle assessment

There is a great benefit in improved control of the value chain of exports of fresh fish knuckles for distribution in retail chains in the UK. Improved packaging methods could increase the shelf life of a product, which is fundamental to this business. With an airtight container, it would be possible to transport the product in a sludge tank with a low temperature (down to -1 ° C), which would both reduce the transport cost significantly and could also extend the shelf life of the product. The method also provides the option of packaging with consumer information, which makes further packaging abroad unnecessary. In air transport, it would be possible to pack all goods in a 12 kg foam box instead of 3 kg, as is most common today, thus saving significant transport costs. Temperature measurements, sensory evaluation, chemical and microbial measurements and life cycle analysis were used to compare different packaging solutions for sea and air transport. Fresh haddock pieces in vacuum-packed containers in a container with slush ice, which were stored at a typical temperature in container transport, turned out to have a shelf life of 3-4 days longer than the other experimental groups, probably mainly due to better temperature control. Consistency between the results of sensory evaluation and microbiological measurements was generally good. The lowest environmental impact of all groups was the pot group with sea-transported, vacuum-packed packaging, but this design could be further improved with regard to the mixing of the ice scraper and fish temperature control and thus the shelf life.

The aim of the project was to compare alternative packaging methods of fresh fish loins to the traditional packaging. Comparison was made between packages in terms of temperature control and product storage life by simulating air and sea transport from Iceland to UK in air climate chambers. The evaluation was made by the sensory panel and microbialand chemical analysis by the Matís laboratory in Reykjavík. Furthermore, the environmental impact of the aforementioned transport modes and packaging methods was assessed by means of LCA (Life Cycle Assessment). About 70–75% of Iceland's exports of fresh fillets and loins are transported by air and the rest by container ships. Increased knowledge on the advantages and disadvantages of the packages used for this fresh fish export will facilitate the selection of packages and improve the quality and storage life of the products. By using vacuum-packaging it is possible to use 12 kg packages in air freight instead of the traditional 3– 5 kg packages; but the market is increasingly demanding smaller individual packages. Sea transported larger packages use less space in shipping, lowering freight cost and environmental impact. Vacuum packed haddock loins immersed in slurry ice in a fish tub stored at sea transport temperature conditions proved to have a 3–4 day longer storage life than all the other experimental groups, probably mainly because of better temperature control. Good agreement was obtained between the sensory- and microbial evaluation. Finally, the sea transport-tub-group was found to be the most environmentally friendly and could be improved with regard to product temperature control and thereby storage life.

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Reports

Injection and brining of tilapia fillets

Published:

01/12/2009

Authors:

Kristín Anna Þórarinsdóttir, Kolbrún Sveinsdóttir, Þóra Valsdóttir, Irek Klonowski, Aðalheiður Ólafsdóttir, Hannes Magnússon, Arnljótur Bjarki Bergsson, Ragnar Jóhannsson, Emilia Martinsdóttir

Supported by:

Tækniþróunarsjóður Rannís / Technology Development Fund, RANNIS - Icelandic Center for Research

contact

Kolbrún Sveinsdóttir

Project Manager

kolbrun.sveinsdottir@matis.is

Injection and brining of tilapia fillets

The aim of the project was to investigate the effect of spraying and pickling on the utilization, shelf life and properties of tilapia fillets. Three product categories were produced: chilled products, frozen products (with insignificant changes in salt content) and lightly salted, frozen products. During the processing of chilled products, red fillets were injected with a weak brine (1% salt) containing a reduced cod base (2% brine protein). Lightly salted fillets were initially sprayed with 4% brine, then pickled overnight. Part of the fillet was frozen after pickling but a similar amount was injected with the protein solution after pickling. Utilization increased during spraying and pickling, there was a significant difference in weight changes in frozen fillets and lightly salted fillets due to differences in the salt content of these two product categories. The waterproofness of fillets was poorer after freezing than after storage in the refrigerator. The shelf life of products was short and possible reasons for this are discussed in the report. Microbial growth and degradation processes were largely independent of injection and brine.

The objective of the project was to study effect of injection and brining on the yield, storage life and characteristics of tilapia fillets. Three different product groups were produced: chilled. Frozen (with small salt changes) and lightly salted products. During processing of chilled products fillets with skin were injected with brine containing minced cod (2%) protein in brine. Lightly brined fillets were initially injected with 4% brine and then brined overnight. A part of the fillets was frozen after brining but similar part was injected with protein solution after brining. The yield increased with injection and brining, distinct difference was in the weight changes of frozen and lightly salted fillets because of the difference of the salt content of these two product groups. Water holding capacity of the frozen fillets was lower than for chilled fillets and the storage life was very short. Microbial growth was mostly not depending on the injection and brining.

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Reports

Combined Blast and Contact cooling - Effects on physiochemical characteristics of fresh haddock (Melanogrammus aeglefinus) fillets

Published:

01/06/2008

Authors:

Magnea Guðrún Arnþórsdóttir, Sigurjón Arason, Björn Margeirsson

Supported by:

Tækniþróunarsjóður, AVS

contact

Sigurjón Arason

Chief Engineer

sigurjon.arason@matis.is

Combined Blast and Contact cooling - Effects on physiochemical characteristics of fresh haddock (Melanogrammus aeglefinus) fillets

Skaginn hf. has a patent for new processing technology for the processing of fresh and frozen fillets based on so-called skin cooling before peeling. The purpose of this research project was to compare fillet processing with skin cooling and traditional fillet processing. The project compares fresh fillets and chilled fillets with regard to utilization, quality and shelf life. Two experiments were performed, on the one hand Experiment I where water resistance, quality, boiling efficiency and appearance were examined, and on the other hand Experiment II where these same factors were examined and the effect of erosive cooling on the shelf life of fresh and frozen haddock was examined. The experiments were carried out at Festi ehf. in Hafnarfjörður. The main results of these studies showed that fillet processing with skin cooling has more advantages than traditional fillet processing. The erosive cooling gives higher utilization and more valuable products with a longer shelf life. Increased shelf life of fresh fish provides increased opportunities for export, which is very important for the fishing industry.

The aim of the project was to compare a new processing technique, CBC, with traditional processing of haddock fillets. In the latter the fillets go through the process without additional refrigeration. In the new processing technique, CBC, the fillets, after filleting and pre-trimming, go through pre-cooler / fluid-ice followed by CBC super-chilling. Two trials were performed, a preliminary experiment (I) and a main experiment (II). In the preliminary experiment (I), water holding capacity, quality and cooking yield were examined. In the main experiment (II) these same factors were examined, in addition to the superchilling effect on extended shelf-life of fresh and frozen haddock fillets. After the pre-cooler step, the fillets gained weight with yields of 101.6% to 102.7%. After the CBC super-chilling the fillets had final yields of 100.3% to 101.2%. After skinning, the fillets without refrigeration (traditional processing) lost most weight. The highest value of cooking yield was obtained in CBC super-chilled fillets with skin. Skinless traditional and CBC super-chilled fillets showed similar cooking yield (P> 0.05). CBC super-chilling increased the total yield of the fillets. The difference between the traditional fillets and the super-chilled fillets was significant. The appearance of the CBC super-chilled fillets was much better and with less gaping than the traditional fillets. The traditional fillets had more ragged outlines, and the ratio of cut-offs after fine-trimming was therefore higher for the traditional fillets than the CBC super-chilled fillets. Appearance of the traditional fillets showed a little yellow tinge which increased during the storage time. The CBC super-chilled fillets had a whiter and more "fresh" appearance and were therefore more attractive. Examination of total bacterial count, and amount of TMA and TVN showed that the CBC super-chilling process can extend the shelf life of fresh haddock fillets.

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