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Received 5000 tonnes of pearlside

HB Grandi’s fishmeal plants have received around 5000 tonnes of pearlside so far this month. According to Gudmundur Hannesson, manager at the Akranes plant, roughly 4400 tonnes have been landed there and Lundey NS landed close to 1000 tonnes to the Vopnafjördur plant at the weekend.

Catches landed by Faxi RE and Hoffell SU are now being processed at the plant in Akranes, with a full load landed by Ingunn AK at the weekend waiting to be processed. According to Gudmundur Hannesson, pearlside is more of a problem to process than other pelagic species, mainly because the fish are so small and there is so much water that comes with the fish as they are discharged.

‘It will certainly get easier with more practice. Really we need equipment to pre-filter the water from the catch as it comes out of the cookers and goes over to the presses. The filters we use at the moment have 4mm holes, but with pearlside these could be as large as 8mm,” he said.

Due to the high volume of water that is pumped ashore with the fish, Ingunn AK has been testing fresh water in the tanks instead of brine. Gudmundur Hannesson said that they have not yet started to process Ingunn’s fish, but the results of the test will soon be known.

‘Overall we have managed to reduce the salt content of the fishmeal to below 7%. I’m told that Faxi’s crew used slush ice to chill their fish during the last trip and the result is that this is probably the best pearlside raw material we have had yet. The vessels’ RSW systems don’t work because of the size of the fish and this is why the trips have to be kept short and preferably in cold weather so this maintains the quality of the fish on board,’ said Gudmundur Hannesson.