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Sensing fish freshness From May 2009 newsletter

Determination of fish freshness

Innovative sensors have been applied to the rapid, objective and non-destructive determination of fish freshness, as part of a Campden BRI research project funded by Seafish. Freshness is recognised as the key element of fish quality, and is significantly affected by storage time and temperature. Established sensory methods are commonly used but require skilled assessors. Using cod as a test species, the project explored the use of specific imaging technologies for measuring freshness related changes - looking at whole fish, fillets and gills.

Using digital colour imaging (DigiEye) it proved possible to measure changes in gill filament colour, and eye cloudiness correlated with deterioration in freshness. Meanwhile, near-infrared (NIR) hyperspectral imaging and NIR bulk spectroscopy were applied to raw fish. With NIR imaging it was possible to identify which part of the fillet gave the best results for measuring freshness. For bulk spectroscopy, measurements of gill filaments gave the best model prediction of time stored. The work will be reported in full on the Seafish website.

Enquiries are welcome on our growing portfolio of activities for the fish and seafood sector, as well as the application of our range of imaging technologies across sectors and products.

Contact Imaging: Martin Whitworth
+44(0)1386 842139

Contact Fish: Craig Leadley
+44(0)1386 842059