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Effects of long-term feed deprivation on the development of rigor mortis and aspects of muscle quality in live-stored mature Atlantic cod (Gadus Morhua L.)

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Kjetil Aune


Journal of Aquatic Food Product Technology ; Volume 27. p. 477–485. 2018

Ageeva, Tatiana Nikolaevna; Olsen, Ragnar Ludvig; Joensen, Sjurdur; Esaiassen, Margrethe

Fresh Atlantic cod is available in large amounts in Norway during the first 5 months of the year. Live-storage of cod may extend the marketing period of fresh cod products throughout the year. In addition, this concept makes pre-rigor processing possible. The main problem of keeping wild cod in captivity is that it does not easily accept formulated dry feed. The purpose of this study was, therefore, to investigate how long-term live-storage of mature Atlantic cod in the absence of feed (79 days) affects the onset and development of rigor mortis, as well as fillet quality by assessing hardness and water-holding capacity of the muscle, pH, protein, and water content. The results showed that starvation of Atlantic cod for 23 days reduces the pre-rigor time from 29 to 17 h. Further starvation did not decrease this period significantly, suggesting that live-stored cod deprived of feed for 79 days may still be industrially processed before the onset of rigor mortis. More than 51 days of starvation reduced protein concentration and increased water content of the muscle. After 51 days, the muscle texture was softer than in fish starved for a shorter period.

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