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14 April 2024

Types of traditional fermented fish products

Published: 15:55, 3 March 2024

Update: 16:00, 3 March 2024

Types of traditional fermented fish products

Photo: Daily Messenger

Fermented fish products can be divided into three groups based on the texture of the final product. Either these products retain their original form or are reduced to a paste or a liquid form.

Depending on the source of microorganisms, fermented fish products can also be divided into those produced by spontaneous fermentation which occurs as a result of microorganisms naturally present on the raw materials or in the air, and those where fermentation is initiated with a standardized Starter culture. To ensured quality characteristics, fermentation can be better controlled by adding known starter cultures.

Starter cultures prepared from different types of microorganisms including bacteria and fungi, suppress growth of spoilage microflora and improve flavour by degrading peptides and/or oligopeptides to amino acids.

In traditional fermented fish products sometimes Carbohydrate sources such as rice, millet, flour or sugar are added, often alongside salt.

This Chart is created by the writer.

Besides accelerating fermentation, these added carbohydrates impart a characteristic flavours to the end products.

Based on salt concentration, traditional fermented fish products can be classified into three types:  high-salt (more than 20% of the total weight), low-Salt (3-8%) and no salt. Salt is added during fermentation to reduce water activity and activate some of the enzymes present (inherent in either the fish flesh or in the microorganisms) to improve organoleptic properties of the final products.

The writer, a PhD candidate at Wageningen University and Research, the Netherlands, is working as Associate Professor, Department of Human Nutrition and Dietetics, Patuakhali Science and Technology University.

She can be reached at: [email protected]