New Digital Salt Meters from ATAGO Offer Easier Way for Seafood Processors to Maintain Consistent Quality

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ATAGO's series of safe, cost-effective digital salt meters, including the ES-421 and PAL-ES2, have provided a fantastic alternative to traditional titration, 3rd party testing, and reagent strips in the seafood processing industry. Domestic fish roe processors have found the units particularly useful.

Both models are very easy to use, and gave accurate and consistent readings -- Manager Tom Scott at Q Sea Specialty Services.

Do you know how the salmon roe, or 'ikura,' at your local Japanese restaurant gets its pleasantly salty taste? What about the can of albacore tuna in your kitchen cabinet? Both were brined in a salt solution during processing to enhance the flavor, and at some stage in their production, both the tuna and the roe were tested for salt content to ensure consistent taste and quality between batches.

But there are more than a few ways to test salt content. Many smaller seafood processors send their product out to a third party lab to be tested which can take weeks to get results back. Larger ones may use titration to determine salt content. However, titration requires the use of toxic chemicals and titrators are not exactly known for being portable instruments. There is also the running cost for the reagent chemicals and the risk of contamination. Other processors use reagent test strips, but these are quite the hassle to use considering the measurement time and how difficult the results are to read.

That's where ATAGO's ES-421 digital salt meter comes in. The ES-421 uses the conductivity method to analyze the amount of NaCl in a sample. Results are displayed on a clear digital display, no chemicals are required, and measurements can be taken in about one minute. Best of all, the unit is portable and can be taken anywhere in the processing facility.

Some of the biggest seafood processors in Alaska and on the west coast, including Ocean Beauty Seafoods, use the ES-421. Ocean Beauty corporate QA manager Catherine Rollman told us about her experience using ATAGO salt meters at their processing facilities. The unit helped Ocean Beauty standardize their salt testing across several plants. "We currently use the ES-421 at five different facilities. It has helped us standardize our SOPs and training programs across facilities. I like the reliability, fast results, and ease of use. I also appreciate [ATAGO's] prompt customer service."

Local processors have had great success with the ES-421 as well. Take it from Manager of Roe Services at Q Sea Specialty, Tom Scott. Tom measures salmon roe salt content to make sure it matches the palates of his overseas customers. After brining, he uses the ES-421 and PAL-ES2 to check the amount of salt that the roe absorbed. "Both models are very easy to use, and gave accurate and consistent readings. My biggest overseas customer had a technician come over to sample product, and he used my analyzers to compare with his own, and was completely satisfied with the results."

The ES-421 salt meter can be used to test salt in multiple phases of seafood processing. It can be used to test the percent of salt in the brine and curing process, and also used to verify how much salt was absorbed by the product. Even distributors can use it to test incoming product from their suppliers to verify salt content before selling it to customers.

ATAGO has been making precision optical instruments for over 70 years and is a purveyor of quality worldwide. All instruments are 100% designed and manufactured in Japan and are backed up by our high level of customer service. ATAGO has a strong connection with the seafood processing industry, and salt meters like the ES-421 and PAL-ES2 were developed to meet the unique needs of these industries.

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Tama'e Avis
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