|50thICoMST in Helsinki and my experience
food quality and assurance under the supervision of Dr. Emiko Okazaki. In NRIFS, my job is very clear-cut and that is "to develop non-destructive quality evaluation systems using Near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS)."
Thermal processing of food products to render them free of pathogens, toxin-formers, and also spoilage micro-organisms has been practiced for more than 5,000 years. Although processed foods are generally safe, bacteria are everywhere, including on such foods as meat, poultry, fish and shellfish, and egg. If food is not handled safely, harmful bacteria can multiply to dangerous levels and can cause illness in humans. A number of methods have been reported by several authors to assess previous heat treatment (endpoint temperature, EPT) of meat products, but similar studies on marine products are negligible, although marine products play a growing role as a human food source. Moreover, surimi-based products have been gaining popularity in recent years for their protein quality, low fat content, and convenience for consumers. Therefore, it is important to achieve optimum heat treatment of such value-added seafood. No such EPT measurements of fish meat gel products have been reported so far. In the present study, attempts were made to assess the EPT of kamaboko gel as a model fish gel product by using NIR spectroscopy.
I have started here my research work with two topics:
1) Classification of fresh and frozen-thawed fish
2) Assessing the heating adequacy of fish meat product, e.g.
My research has now progressed on both topics. I and Dr.Noriko Ishida have attended 50th international Congress of Meat Science and Technology (50th ICoMST) as a contributor delegate. It was held in Helsinki University, Finland between 8 and 13 August 2004 where 300-research works are presented. It was carried out by being divided into the following six sessions. 1 Biochemistry and biology, 2 Meat quality, 3 Microbiology and safety, 4 Meat technology, 5 Meat in nutrition and health,6 Hot topics in meat science. Other people attended (related to fish and fishery products) from mainly related to seafood: Danish Institute for Fisheries Research (Denmark), Institute of Fishery technology and Fish Quality (Hamburg, Germany), Swedish Institute for Food Research(Sweden), Matforsk Norwegian Food Research Institute(Norway) Food Science Institute( KSU, USA)
Finland is a beautiful country located in Northern Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea, Gulf of Bothnia, and Gulf of Finland, between Sweden and Russia. Its total area is 338,145 sq km while the population is only 5,214,512 (July 2004).
Helsinki is the capital of Finland. Finland has a highly industrialized, largely free-market economy.
In the congress, my presented topic was "Visible-NIR spectroscopy: a non-destructive rapid technique to assess end-point temperature of kamaboko gel." I
presented it in session 4. In NRIFS we developed a rapid, non-destructive instrumental technique which can verify heating adequacy of fish meat gel using Near-infrared reflectance spectroscopy. Several delegates asked me to provide details about our study. Professor Melvin C Hunt (Kansas State University), Professor Chris Calkins (University of Nebraska), Professor Louw Hoffman (South Africa), Professor Gauri Mittal (University of Guelph), Professor A S Babji (Malaysia) and Dr. Claudia R Perez (Spain), Professor Guenter Klein(Germany) are shown especial interest to use this non-destructive eco-friendly instrumentation. Later we had a marathon discuss about the methods further update and better practical utilization in food industries.
Finnish meat company Atria considered one of the largest meat processing industries over world. We have visited Atria meat processing industry and it was a part of 50th ICoMST. It was a 4 hours train journey from Helsinki and they allowed us to see every units including brief explanation. This is my first experience to see practically a world-leading meat industry. Especially my interest was to see the non-destructive evaluation unit where the using NIRS for quality evaluation before and after processing raw and finished products. They are using NIRS for at-line quality evaluation.
I consider myself very lucky to get this opportunity to join 50th ICoMST, for this I thank the NRIFS and Dr. Emiko Okazaki.
(c) Copyright National Research Institute of Fisheries Science,Fisheries Research Agency All rights reserved.