By Fintan McConnell, Product Manager NCC Food Ingredients.
When it comes to fresh white fish, time is of the essence. From the moment the fish is caught and taken out of the water until it appears on the consumers plate, the clock is ticking. Naturally with fresh fish the need to ensure freshness is of paramount importance. However that is not to say that frozen fish does not also have its challenges. Regardless of it being fresh or frozen, as time passes white fish will discolour. Whilst this does not necessarily mean that the product has spoiled. Unfortunately most consumers will assume otherwise leading to a lower price or unsaleable product.
To counteract this loss in revenue and prolong the lifespan of (in particular) fresh or frozen white fish, it is recommended to use a fish whitening agent or a preservative. However not all whitening agents on the market are the same. Some simply whiten the product but don’t inhibit the oxidation process. Added to that, in my experience some varieties of white fish require an alternative approach.
Prolong the product lifespan, maximise revenue
Here at NCC Food Ingredients we work closely with UK and Irish seafood processers. In one such case the challenge was to prevent a loss of revenue as Monkfish fillets were suffering a reduction in quality due to delays in the processing chain. A range of traditional fish whitening products and stabilisers were trialled with little or no success. NCC Food Ingredients was approached to find a solution. Monkfish being a somewhat meatier fish than most white fish required a new innovative approach.
A custom solution was required
Working in conjunction with our partner Ph7 Food Technology we were able to provide a custom solution that addressed the challenges. Our solution recovered the appearance, moisture, texture and taste of the end product, as well as keeping it fresher for longer.
This was achieved by using 1% PEX R1 whitener combined with 0.5% T-40 whitener and then added to cold water that contained 2% salt. The fillets were then soaked in this solution for between 6 to 24 hours at a ratio of Monkfish to water solution 1:2. This resulted in a simple and economic solution to a potentially expensive problem.
Searching for a solution to solve your white fish challenges?
If you are currently using a fish whitener product or are considering using one, then talk to us here at NCC Food Ingredients. We have the knowledge and experience to ensure that you get the best solution that remedies your white fish challenges. Our portfolio of whitening agents not only whitens but it also increases the shelf life as well as eliminating unpleasant odours and flavours.
To learn more about our full range of Ph7 Food Technology seafood products that includes fish whiteners, seafood preservatives, sulphite free and sulphite reduced prawn solutions, as well as cephalopod stabilisers and whiteners then please fill out the form below and we’ll be in contact.