World Aquaculture Society Meetings

Add To Calendar 26/02/2016 14:00:0026/02/2016 14:20:00America/ChicagoAquaculture 2016ENSURING FOOD SAFETY AND FOOD QUALITY OF HARVESTED AQUACULTURE PRODUCTS Vendome AThe World Aquaculture Societyjohnc@was.orgfalseanrl65yqlzh3g1q0dme13067DD/MM/YYYY


Michael L. Jahncke*
Virginia Seafood Agricultural Research and Extension Center
Virginia Tech
Hampton, VA  23669

Implementing and following proper harvesting, handling/processing and storage procedures is necessary to ensure the safety and quality of aquaculture products.  Many of the same procedures used to ensure food safety also contribute to higher quality products and longer shelf-life.  The first step to ensure safety and maximum product quality is to follow Best Management  Practices [BMPs] (e.g., Good Aquaculture Practices) during grow-out, harvest,  handling/processing and storage.   After harvest, product safety and quality can be ensured by reducing or eliminating microbial activity, and retarding quality-degrading chemical reactions.  Food microorganisms are found on all surfaces (skin and gills) and in the intestines of the fishery products.  There are several different types of spoilage and pathogenic bacteria associated with aquacultured species.  Spoilage bacteria are generally harmless, but do cause changes in the color, flavor, odor, texture and reduce the shelf-life of these products.  In contrast, pathogenic bacteria are illness causing organisms that can produce toxins or cause infections.  Controlling these microorganisms requires diligence and attention to detail.  Reduced shelf-life and quality deterioration of fishery products is also associated with chemical/enzymatic changes that occur during refrigerated and frozen storage.  Quick cooling/quick freezing and stable low storage temperatures will slow deleterious changes in texture, color and flavor due to chemical/biochemical activity.  After harvest, the 3 Ps (i.e., Product Characteristics/Processing Methods/Package Types) will have a profound effect on the quality and shelf life of chilled and frozen aquacultured products.

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