A comparative study on quality, shelf life and sensory attributes of Atlantic salmon slaughtered on board slaughter vessels against traditional land-based facilities.
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Original versionAquaculture. 2021, 540, . 10.1016/j.aquaculture.2021.736681
The purpose of this study was to investigate the shelf life and quality of Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) slaughtered onboard vessels and shipped to Denmark in −0.8 °C refrigerated seawater (RSW) as compared to traditional land-based slaughtering facilities having fish on ice. The quality and shelf life were measured on fresh and smoked fillets including blood spot counting, fillet gaping, texture hardness, microbiological counts, Quality Index Method (QIM) and sensory analysis. Blood spot counting and fillet gaping were measured on smoked fillets. Fresh fish slaughtered onboard the vessel had significantly lower fillet gaping scores as compared to those slaughtered at the facility, while no difference was found on smoked fillets. There were no significant differences in blood spots counts nor texture hardness between any of the groups. Salmon slaughtered on the vessel had a significant lower QIM score. The total mesophilic count and H2S producing bacteria for fish slaughtered onboard vessels were significant lower at the end of storage (21d). Sensory analysis after 18 days of storage revealed minimal differences between the groups, whereas fish from the vessel had lower protein precipitation. We conclude that fish slaughtered onboard vessels and transported in superchilled RSW onboard a slaughter vessel presents good quality and improves shelf life over time.