Ozone In Seafood Processing
Ozone is a safe, extremely vigorous disinfectant and oxidizer, that can be used to control and eliminate biological growth of unwanted organisms in food or even in the equipment used in the food processing industries. Furthermore, with ozone it is impossible for a microorganism to build up any resistance to oxidation. It is generated on-site, no need to handle or mix chemicals for sanitation. Excess ozone auto decomposes rapidly in oxygen and thus leaves no residues in foods from its decomposition. Ozone treatment assures the sensory, nutritional and physicochemical characteristics of food remain. Ozone:
- Extends food shelf-life
- Removes undesirable odors
The treatment conditions should be specifically determined, following the safety standards and the right levels, for effective and safe use of ozone in all kinds of products.
During food processing operations, surface disinfection and the food storage of the raw commodities is very important, too. Ozone can be applied in storage spaces and surfaces, eliminating all microorganisms that it encounters: bacteria, virus and fungi. With regulatory approval, ozone has become the best eco-friendly environmental option, at the same time that it is the best choice for cost-effectively disinfecting food. The application of ozone improves the microbiological safety of food products and extends their shelf-life without changing their nutritional, chemical, and physical properties. This process provides the company with a greater assurance of food safety and, substantially reduces the plant’s water usage.
The Power of Ozone:
- The most powerful oxidizer available
- Eliminates germs, bacteria, virus and microorganisms
- Controls and destroys microbes
- Disinfects and preserves
- Eliminates mold from the area dedicated to cold storage
- Maintains the storage sanitation inhibiting the pathogen agents
- Reduces the risk of cross-contamination of pathogens
- Extends the validity period of the product
- Improves product quality
- Controls bad smell
- No chemical storage required
- No harmful chemical residual left
- Eco-friendly and economically feasible technology
- Environmentally friendly disinfectant
- Save water usage
Ozone Systems Used In Seafood Processing:
Seafood Storage and Shipping
Ozone gas can be dissolved into water with an ozone injection system, then fed into an ice making machine that will then freeze that ozone dissolved into the water to produce ozonated ice. This process will essentially store the ozone within the ice, creating what is commonly refereed to as ozonated ice. This ozonated ice can be used in the storage of fish to prolong shelf-life and maintain a fresher, better looking product to the end user. Ozone use to produce ozonated ice is not a new concept. In 1936, research in the commercial fish industry was conducted in France that showed a 33% extension in shelf-life of fresh fish stored on ozonated ice when compared with ice produced from regular water in the holds of fishing vessels (Salmon, J).
Ozone can also be dissolved into water and used to wash seafood and fish fillet's to reduce bacteria and extend shelf-life in fresh fish. Historically, fresh fish has commanded a premium in price over frozen fish products. The appearance of this fish will affect the market price of fresh fish. Ozone use in ice for storage in fishing vessels has been used to maintain the highest quality fish and garner the highest possible price for fresh fish products.
While fishing vessels are at sea it is imperative that the fish and seafood harvested early in the voyage are as fresh and comparable in quality as the fish caught near the end of the voyage. As these vessels can at times stay out to sea for weeks at a time, ozonated ice was seen as a great solution to the storage issues experienced in this unique industry. The use of ozonated ice in fish storage has expanded beyond the fishing vessel to fish farming and processing throughout the industry. Today, many fish processors and fish farms will use ozonated ice for all their seafood storage needs. Ozonated ice offers a convenient method of prolonging the shelf-life of seafood products.