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Content archived on 2024-04-30

Development, modelling & application of time temperature integrator system to monitor chilled fish quality

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The project involves developing, modelling and applying inexpensive time-temperature integrator (TTI) systems to monitoring chilled fish quality. The large amount of fish wasted due to spoilage and mishandling can be reduced by using TTIs which are based on effective and accurate predictive models for determining shelf life. Easy-to-use TTI software will facilitate the combination of new and existing predictive models with TTI response, or with product temperature profiles from dataloggers. Tests to date have embraced the development and validation of empirical shelf life predictive models, and testing of the species boque, sea bream, whiting, hake, and cold and warm water marinated shrimp. TTIs are also being developed, tested and modelled. This includes enzyme-substrate systems which are being kinetically characterised as potential TTIs. The square root empirical model ÖRRS successfully models the shelf life of boque under both isothermal (ie constant) and dynamic (ie varying) temperature conditions and so can be used in a TTI monitoring scheme. The square root model was less effective for sea bream (especially under dynamic conditions) and was adequate for whiting and hake in the 0 to 15 C temperature range. However, the Arrhenius model was better with activation energies (denotes the temperature dependency of the spoilage rate) of 21.9 and 16.3 kcal/mol for whiting and hake respectively. The square root model corresponds to an activation energy of 18.9 kcal/mol while that relating to sea bream was 14 kcal/mol. The lightly preserved products tested had activation energies around 27 kcal/mol and thus require a more temperature sensitive TTI. 'Seafood-spoilage-predictor' software has been designed and simulations of some of the models to be included in the software have been carried out.

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