FISH PRESERVATION &-8211; this Article or News was published on this date:2019-05-16 07:08:59 kindly share it with friends if you find it helpful
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Fish as a rule has very short life span once outside its natural habitat which makes finding an effective method of preservation after harvesting a very important factor in pursuing a fish farming venture. The following are some methods of preservation.
Freezing can keep products in near perfect condition for very prolonged periods. Freezing is essential for export purposes. Freezing becomes extremely effective, if it is combined with cold storage (Anthonio, 1970)[i]. Fish that have to be preserved by freezing should be cleaned and packed for easy operation and maximum use of freezing space.
When fish is intended to be stored for a long period, quick freezing is preferred which inhibits bacterial action. During quick freezing every part of the product comes within the range of 0o to -5oC. Properly frozen fish at -20oC retains its physical properties and nutritive values for a year or more and is almost as good as fresh fish[ii]. This can be achieved using a blast freezer
Drying involves dehydration i.e. the removal of moisture contents of fish, so that the bacterial decomposition or enzymic autolysis does not occur. When moisture contents reduce upto 10%, the fishes are not spoiled provided they are stored in dry conditions. Fish drying is achieved either naturally by sun drying or drying it mechanically.
Salting is a process of preserving fish with the use of common salt (sodium chloride), as a preservative. Which penetrates the tissues, thus checks the bacterial growth and reduce the process of spoilage. Salting commences as soon as the fish surface of the fish comes in contact with common salt and the end product shall have the required salinity with taste and odour. Some of the factors involved in salting of fish which play an important role are purity of salt, quantify of salt used and weather conditions like temperature, etc.
During the process the small fishes are directly salted without being cleaned. In the medium and large sized fish; the fish are gutted, washed and filled with salt for uniform penetration through flesh. Large fishes like sharks are cut into convenient sized pieces. Generally, salting is used for temporary preservation of fish. The salt used should be pure common salt so as to keep the quality of the fresh fish. Similarly, fish could be soaked in a solution of water and salt (brine), a process known as Brining. Brining is not used as such as a preservation method but as preparation for smoking or drying.
[i] Anthonio, G.B.O., 1970. Fish marketing survey in the Kainji Lake Basin Yelwa area study. Ibadan, Nigerian Institute of Social and Economic Research, May.