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Effects of additives and packaging method on quality and microbiological characteristics in mild thermal processed fish mince

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Journal of Aquatic Food Product Technology 2014; Volume 23. p. 368–384. 2014

Birkeland, Sveinung; Rotabakk, Bjørn Tore

The effect of adding 2% sodium lactate (NaL) premix to mild thermal processed fish mince, and the effect of packaging the product in vacuum, modified atmosphere (MA), or pretreated with soluble gas stabilization (SGS) prior to MA packaging were investigated. Adding 2% NaL premix significantly affected the color, and the bacterial load was significantly decreased compared to the control product, together with significant differences in the sensory score. Breaking force, firmness, stiffness, and gel strength were significantly increased by adding NaL, while no effect was found on head space gas composition, top web deflation, and pH. SGS significantly decreased the microbial load, but had no interaction effect with NaL. SGS significantly increased the amount of CO2 in the head space gas, together with decreased top web deflation compared to modified packaging. Vacuum packaging significantly increased the breaking point, firmness, and stiffness and increased pH compared to MA and SGS. Addition of a NaL premix to minced fish products can be used successfully to increase shelf life without compromising other quality characteristics. SGS treatment before packaging in MA can successfully be used as an alternative to adding NaL with respect to microbiological product quality and without compromising other quality characteristics.

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