5.1 Energy
5.2 Quality Control

5.2.1 General
5.2.2 Requirements

5.3 Transport

5.3.1 Vessels
5.3.2 Vehicles
5.3.3 Cold store complex

5.4 Distribution and Marketing Stores

5.1 Energy

An overall energy assessment has to be made in order to determine the power requirements and costs whether this is from a mains supply or by on-site generation.

Simply adding all the known power requirements for both processing and other needs, such as lighting, will normally result in an oversupply and an unnecessarily high cost, since it is unlikely that all requirements will be at maximum rating at the same time.

It is impossible to specify the appropriate allowances for the maximum demand and diversity for every type of installation since such allowances call for a special knowledge and experience, and each country may have their own standards and regulations. Standards are usually only a guide and the engineer responsible for the design has scope to increase or decrease values depending on his more detailed knowledge of the factory operation.

The first step in an energy audit will be a listing of all power requirements followed by a more detailed study of the pattern of demand. This study should also take account of daily, weekly or seasonal changes since activity and demand may vary over these periods.

At the completion of the audit, a decision is usually taken which is a compromise between cost and contingency, especially when consideration has to be given to the likely increase in energy demand due to expansion and other factors.

5.2 Quality Control

5.2.1 General

The objectives of quality control are to ensure that quality levels are maintained at an economic cost and that the product does not represent a health hazard. It is also a function of quality control to ensure that the product is consistent, particularly when it is marketed under a brand name.

The first essential in operating a quality control operation is to have a product specification and this may be set by the supplier, the customer or by legislation, standards or codes of practice.

A good quality control operation involves checking the quality of the raw material and the product at various stages of production. A final check should be done systematically and this should be regarded as confirmation that the other elements of quality control are working.

5.2.2 Requirements

Three levels of quality control have been identified. Visual inspections:

The receiver of fish at each stage of collection, processing and distribution should make at least visual inspections and keep records of their observations.

Observations that can be made are:

general appearance of the fish or product;
whether the fish is properly iced, chilled or frozen;
whether there is any physical damage;
whether the containers or packages are clean and undamaged;
whether the species, size and other elements are in accordance with a specification or order; etc. Quality control at the freezer complex:

All goods moving in and out of the freezer complex should be subjected to quality control inspections. The following list will give some guidance on this provision of facilities for visual and other sensory checks at a large factory:

Examination room 40 m floor area
Facilities Fillet bench of stainless steel or stone sloped for drainage
Sink for thawing samples
Dry bench with island situation with good lighting for product inspection
Optional room Small kitchens of about 18 m for preparing cooked samples for sensory evaluation
Equipment Household-type freezer -25C
House-type refrigerator 0 to 5C
Filleting board, knives
100-kg weighing machine
5-kg weighing machine
Thermometer, -35 to 40C
Plastic boxes
Cost of equipment Approximately US$ 2 500
Staff Two Quality control for certification:

Most countries require certification of imported frozen foods and the quality control requirements for this operation will include facilities for sensory, microbiological and chemical operations. A summary of the main requirements is given below:

Examination room 40 m floor area
Kitchen 18 m floor area
Microbiology laboratory 25 m floor area
Media preparation room 10 m floor area
Chemical laboratory 30 m floor area
Glassware washing room 9 m floor area
Offices, stores and toilets 25 m2 floor area
Equipment for examination as in Section
Cost of equipment for examination US$ 2 500
Facilities for microbiology work benches with sinks
gas supply
Equipment for microbiology microscope
incubator 30 to 65C
serological water bath
balance 0.005 g
water still
Cost of microbiological equipment approximately US$ 9 000
Facilities for chemical laboratory work benches with sinks
fume cupboard
storage cupboards
Equipment for chemical laboratory balance 0.005 g
drying oven 50 to 200C
muffle furnace 1 000C
water bath
extraction heater
gas burners
kjeldahl shelf
distillation apparatus
magnetic stirrer
air ejector-filter pump
safety equipment
Cost of chemical laboratory equipment US$ 10 000
Staff for certification laboratory six-eight

The total cost of equipping a certification laboratory, including offices, stores, will be about US$ 25 000.

Full details for setting up a model fishery products quality control laboratory are given in FAO Fisheries Technical Paper No.107 (FIPP/T107).

5.3 Transport

5.3.1 Vessels

5.3.2 Vehicles

Internal collection and distribution of frozen fish requires a good deal of planning and fore-sight, and capital costs involved can be considerable. One of the major limiting factors in the selection of vehicles is the road network, since this may impose strict limits on the size of vehicle that can be used. In some countries, vehicles with up to 40-t loads are permissible, but in others even when the road system is suitable -there may be limits imposed by local or national authorities.

The economics of road transport generally improve with the size of vehicle, but this may also be affected by a local system of taxation or other restrictions.

To cover most likely situations that may arise and also the different requirements, such as local and long-distance haulage, three sizes of vehicle are listed below. Intermediate sizes are also readily available since individual manufacturers can usually supply a wide range of vehicles based on standard cab and engine units:

Vehicle cost
insulated only US$ 13 500
with mechanical refrigeration US$ 18 000
fuel-consumption driving 12.9-15.7 litres/100 km
fuel-consumption refrigeration 0.9 litres/h (approximately)
useful life up to 160 000 km
Vehicle cost
vehicle + refrigeration US$ 27 750
fuel-consumption driving 15.7-23.6 litres/100 km
fuel-consumption refrigeration 1.5 litres/h (approximately)
useful life up to 240 000 km
Vehicle cost
vehicle + refrigeration US$ 65 250
fuel-consumption driving 28.3-35.4 litres/100 km
fuel-consumption refrigeration 2.27 litres/h (approximately)
useful life up to 480 000 km

Maintenance costs of mechanical refrigeration can add another US$ 750-1 500/year.

If a cold store operates its own fleet of vehicles, a garage/workshop may be required. Table 71 lists equipment which may be required for this facility.

5.3.3 Cold store complex

Handling requirements at the cold store can influence the store shape, since stores with heavy traffic will require a long frontage for vehicle access. The need for quick handling in and out is also the main reason why multi-storey cold stores are now seldom built.

The unloading platform should be at least 4 m deep and protection against rain and direct sun-light should be provided by a roof canopy.

In warmer countries an enclosed handling area may also be necessary, and this should be maintained at a temperature of about 10C. Figure 65 shows a typical plan for a service store with heavy traffic.

The forecourt of a cold store should have sufficient space for manoeuvring vehicles and, also, for parking of trucks awaiting loading and unloading.

Access road width should allow the largest trucks to pass. For example, if the truck width is 2.5 m, the access road would require to have a minimum width of 6.5 m.

5.4 Distribution and Marketing Stores

The system for the storage, distribution and marketing of frozen fish is collectively known as the "cold chain".

The importance of this "cold chain" is such that a prestudy of well defined requirements should be one of the first steps when contemplating the use of frozen storage as a method of fish preservation. This study will show what services and equipment -both in size and design -are required for a successful operation.

The two examples shown in Figures 65 and 66 represent typical home and export market storage and distribution systems, but there are many other combinations.

In Figure 65, three possibilities are shown which represent situations where there has been a different degree of development of the internal "cold chain". If this "cold chain" is not complete to the point of consumption, every attempt should be made to ensure that only the last step in handling and distribution involves the movement of a thawing product.

It can be seen that in some distribution chains, the produce is held at a number of storage points and, although this is often unavoidable, keeping the number of storage points to a minimum is one of the best ways to save energy, operating costs and, above all, maintain the high quality of the product.

Handling the produce outside the temperature control facilities should be kept to a minimum.

Ideally, the "cold chain" should be operated so that produce is not transferred from a storage space at a higher temperature to one at a lower temperature. The marketing operation should also be programmed so that longer storage times are spent in the larger, lower-temperature cold stores. The arrangements shown in Figures 65 and 66 give typical temperatures and likely storage times and it can be seen that the main bulk store can be either at the area of production or the area of consumption, and the ideal temperature progression is therefore not always achieved

Table 71 Equipment required for a vehicle maintenance workshop



Cost $

Hydraulic lift



Tuning equipment



Battery charger



Wheel balancer



Head lamp tester



10 tonne jack



Compressor 30 c.f.m.



Pneumatic tyre beader breaker



Pneumatic wrenches



Tyre levers






Wheel alignment equipment



Air pressure gauge






Axle stands



Mechanics tools

11 (sets)


Special tools



Transmission jack



Mobile lifting jack



Universal engine stand






Small lathe



Electric welder



Oxy-acetylene welding set









Pulley extractors



Portable drill





Contingencies for others @ 20%   




The main function of the distribution or depot store is to provide temporary storage between the main bulk store and marketing outlet. Intermediate stores will also require facilities to allow large consignments to be broken down for final distribution, and it is important that arrangements are made in the design and layout for this operation to be done under conditions not harmful to the product. In tropical countries, for instance, it may be necessary to provide a refrigerated annex to the store for handling and sorting. The requirements for handling and ease of access for the selection of produce are probably more demanding at the distribution store than at the main bulk store, therefore, the storage density is less and the cost of storage proportionally higher.

Figure 65 Typical storage and distribution systems for home markets

Storage times are the likely maximum at each stage, but the total storage time need not be the sum of all the stages

The optimum size of a distribution or depot store can only be determined after a careful pre-study of each individual case. Some of the factors to be taken into account are:

the movement of goods in and out of the store and the probable storage times;
peak requirements due to seasonal and other factors;
size and frequency of loads;
the mix of goods to be stored and the likely storage density;
requirements for ready access to the products stored;
separation requirements between different products;
sorting requirements within the store;
buffer requirements to offset likely delays in supplies.

Figure 66 Typical storage and distribution system for export market