Number of pages: 29
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The Norwegian Seafood Federation (FHL) has applied for approval of a new alternative method for processing of category 2 animal by-products (ABP) of fish origin. The processing method is characterized by fish raw material that is grinded before mixing with formic acid at pH ≤4 and stored for ≥24 hours before heat treatment of the silage with a particle size ≤10 mm at a temperature ≥85 °C for ≥25 minutes.
The method was assessed by EFSA (BIOHAZ-panel) who concluded that the risk related to pathogens present in fish ABP’s from aquaculture would be adequately reduced by the proposed process if the requirements of the HACCP-plan could be achieved in a full scale plant. The production trials verified the feasibility of the HACCP-plan under real processing conditions in a full scale plant.
Another purpose of the production trials was to demonstrate that relevant pathogens are inactivated by the proposed process. For each of 20 batches produced, 5 samples of silage and 5 of end product were analyzed for Salmonella and Enterobacteriaceae. All results were negative, confirming earlier lab scale experiments showing that the formic acid treatment alone inactivate those bacteria. One composite sample of silage and one of end product for each batch were analyzed for C.perfringens. All results were negative, confirming a low prevalence of C.perfringens in fish silages, as also demonstrated in earlier surveys. Anaerobic sulfite-reducing bacteria were analyzed in the same composite samples. The concentration in silage ranged from 1.100 to 130.000 per gram, while heat treatment provided on average more than 3 log reductions. This reduction rate is comparable to that found in earlier lab scale inactivation experiments with C.perfringens and C.sporogenes spores.
All batches of end product met the microbiological requirements used to assess inactivation effect of new processing methods according to method 7 in Regulation (EC) 1774/2002. Based on this, it is concluded that the risk related to pathogens present in fish ABP from aquaculture would be adequately reduced by the proposed process.