A group of scientists at the Philippines National Fisheries Research and Development Institute (NFRDI) have found a new process that allows Penaeus monodon shrimp heads are turned into powder which that can be used as seasoning and soups, among other multiple things. With this new discover, food processing manufacturers could not only cut down their wastage but, more importantly, earn profit from otherwise discarded materials.
“In a shrimp processing plant, the shrimp’s head is typically discarded along with its shells and tails. The waste makes up 50% of the raw material, which means almost half of the money spent goes down the drain already”, said the members of the NFRDI. After that, they explain, “improper disposal of these wastes may cause harm to the environment due to their nutrient-rich properties”.
According to the study of Rosa Bassig, Senior Science Research Specialist of the Fisheries Postharvest Research and Development Division of NFRDI, about 200 g of powder is produced per one kilogram of fresh shrimp heads.
“Not bad for business, considering that what would have been just a waste was converted into something valuable. The powder can be used as shrimp flavor seasoning, seafood broths, or soups, among others. Moreover, it has a storage life of up to six months when stored at 28-30°C”, based on the study published in The Philippine Journal of Fisheries.“
These promising fisheries technological development contributes to the world’s battle against food and processing wastage while providing income and livelihood for fish processing industries, they assure.
Two different treatments
The study aims to utilize Penaeus monodon shrimp head wastes into powder form using a cabinet type drier and establish the processing yield and important product qualities.
Is for that that two treatments of shrimp head powders were studied: shrimp head powder with carapace (SHPwc) and shrimp head powder without carapace (SHPwoc). The yields obtained were 26.72% for SHPwc while 20.42% for SHPwoc; both are considered to have significant value since both are produced from wastes.
Both products have satisfactory water activity levels, said the study; however, the bulk density was high, and the solubility was lower than other published powdered seafood by-products. Both products have light orange or brown color: however, in both odor and flavor, SHPwoc had a higher mean general acceptability, with “like slightly-like moderately” results.
“SHPwoc was subjected to a shelf-life study with added salt and ascorbic acid preservatives. Monthly analyses revealed that the microbiological parameters are still within limits, and both moisture and pH values were acceptable after eight months of storage at ambient temperature (28-30°C).“
However, the peroxide value is acceptable until only the sixth month, which signifies the end of shelf-life based on theoretical sensory changes. The results of this study show the promising significance of utilizing shrimp processing wastes into seafoodbased products.
Research, a very important role in the development
The NFRDI was collectively conceived by the national leadership out of a realization that fisheries research plays a very important role in the development, management, conservation and protection of the country’s aquatic resources.
This realization is embodied under Section 82 of Republic Act (RA) 8550, otherwise known as the Philippine Fisheries Code of 1998 as amended by RA 10654. This law is the enabling instrument that gave rise to our creation and birth.
“As an agency attached to the Department of Agriculture (DA), NFRDI are the primary research arm of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR). They sit as member of the National Research Development Network (NRDN) of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST).“
They link and partner with other institutions in their efforts to harmonize the fragmented fisheries research and development efforts in the country. Thus, we collaborate with the Philippine Council for Agriculture and Aquatic Resources Research and Development (PCAARRD), the Department of Agriculture – Bureau of Agricultural Research (DA-BAR), and BFAR.