Producing a good vacuum and using good quality vacuum bags becomes extremely important when vacuum packing fish. Regardless of the type of fish, the exclusion of oxygen and moisture significantly reduces the rate at which the oils in the fish begin to breakdown. Using high quality vacuum bags is as important as using a high quality vacuum pack machine because of permeability concerns when packing fish products.
Tests have proven that lean fish (for example, Halibut, Sole and Flounder) kept for two days on ice will last up to 12 months in a freezer before any loss in quality is noticeable. The same fish kept on ice for seven days can only be stored for 2 months in a freezer before a loss of quality is noticeable. More oily fish (for example,Trout and Salmon) can be stored, under identical conditions, for a third of the time compared to leaner fish.
It is important to note from these examples that freshness and quality of the product at the time of vacuum packaging prior to storage is a large factor on longevity. While vacuum packing increases the shelf-life by controlling the breakdown of the fish oil, freshness and quality of the product must still be a concern.
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