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Using electricity as a tool in quality studies of Atlantic salmon

Roth, Bjorn, Øines, Sigurd, Rotabakk, Bjørn Tore, Birkeland, Sveinung
European food research & technology 2008 v.227 no.2 pp. 571-577
Salmo salar, aluminum foil, animal experimentation, color, drip loss, electrical treatment, electricity, fillet quality, fillets, food research, ice, muscle contraction, muscles, pH, salmon, slicing, t-test, texture
In order to reveal what role anaerobe muscle activity has on the fillet quality in Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar), 18 rested fish were killed on site and immediately filleted. One fillet was used as control group while the other was electrically exercised using 10 V, 5 Hz pDC for 3 min. Fillet weight and muscle pH was measured before the fillets were wrapped in aluminum foil and stored on ice. After 7 days muscle pH, color, and weight was measured. Texture profile analysis (TPA) was estimated using a 20 mm cylindrical probe compressing either at 40, 60 or 80% into the fillet and the shear force was estimated by slicing standardized muscles samples with a blade. Results show that electrical stimulation forces the muscle to contract and the muscle pH to drop by 0.5 units, leading to higher drip loss and loss of color. Comparing the fillets in pairs (paired t test) strengthens evidence on drip loss and color loss, but revealed also softer texture. Optimum compression rate for detecting differences in salmon muscle is at 60% compression. We conclude that electrical stimulation is a powerful tool for simulating anaerobe muscle activity enabling comparative studies within the same individual, hence isolating the variation amongst individuals and the location of sampling. Furthermore electrical stimulation reduces the need for live animal experimentation in quality studies.