Water Holding Capacity (WHC) – the ability of raw meat to retain moisture is a critical quality parameter in the harvesting and processing of salmon. In fact, a high WHC is one of the primary goals in the food processing business because of its impact on the product’s yield and sensory attributes (weight and texture). Numerous studies indicate that achieving fast and uniform cooling is instrumental in maintaining the WHC, and Sunwell’s DeepChill® technology does just that. As an adaptive cooling and preservation process for superchilling (also known as supercooling) fish, DeepChill® offers numerous advantages over conventional methods, such as Refrigerated Sea Water (RSW) systems.
Let’s review how DeepChill® superchilling technology works and why it may be more beneficial than RSW.
The Workings and Advantages of DeepChill®
The RSW method of cooling salmon involves continuous recirculation of seawater in the holding tanks with the help of pumps. The chilled water passes through the tank and cools the layers of fish while keeping the product in a semi-floating suspended position. RSW may be used on fishing boats or well boats to cool salmon when caught. Subsequently, salmon storage may involve flake ice for post rigour processing and flake ice or gel pack for packaging.
However, it is essential to remember that as soon as the fish is caught and dead, some drip loss (loss of free water and water-soluble compounds in the muscle tissue) continues to occur during the storing, processing, and thawing stages. This not only affects the consumer’s perception of product texture and appearance but may also impact overall product profitability.
The DeepChill® superchilling process is based on the principles of fast cooling and sub-zero temperature consistency. Each individual DeepChill® ice crystal contains cooling energy that can rapidly chill and maintain sub-zero temperature of the fish, which in turn minimizes drip loss and maintains WHC throughout the fish processing lifecycle. In addition to fast cooling and gentle handling, DeepChill® offers various other benefits over RSW or other traditional fish preservation techniques.
- Versatile Applications: Comprising millions of micro-crystals suspended in a liquid solution that forms ice slurry, DeepChill® is an innovative cooling and advanced preservation method, suitable for cooling, thawing, chilled storage preservation and packing.
- Quicker Cooling: Since the micro-crystals surround the entire surface area of the fish, they speed up the chill times, ensuring that the product remains substantially cooler than it would with RSW systems. (Learn more about DeepChill Vs. RSW cooling)
- Better Product: DeepChill® Slurry ice technology is better equipped to prevent tissue degradation, bruising or bacterial growth. Since it uses the fish itself as a cooling medium, it reduces the need for large quantities of ice during storage or transportation, prevents microbial activity, and preserves the freshness of the product. As salmon processors, you can enjoy extended product freshness, improved yield, and better quality and shelf life.
- Adaptable Technology: DeepChill® technology can be easily integrated with your existing plant operations. DeepChill® ice slurry systems can adapt to your applications in the form of liquid, dry, free-flowing crystals, or a thicker paste. It is simple to operate and maintain and offers flexible, customizable configurations for fishing vessels, aquaculture farms, and salmon processing plants.
Click here to watch a video of how DeepChill® is revolutionizing the science of preserving freshness in the seafood industry.
Use DeepChill® by Sunwell for Salmon Harvesting and Processing
At Sunwell, we specialize in the designing DeepChill® slurry ice systems for a diverse range of clients across the globe. Our cutting-edge slurry ice technology can help you achieve high-quality products, ease and efficiency of operations, and a cleaner environment that will give you an edge over your competitors. Whether you wish to incorporate advanced cooling and preservation measures during chilling, storage, processing, or packaging, our experts can advise you on our end-to-end solutions for salmon harvesting and processing.
For fast, uniform, long-lasting, fish super chilling solutions that enhance product quality and streamline your operations, count on DeepChill® systems designed by Sunwell. Call +1 (905) 856 – 0400 or fill out our savings calculator to find out how we can help you save!