- Shelf-Stable »
- Frozen & Refrigerated »
Shrimp are delivered to canneries either (1) unpeeled in the fresh state in ice or refrigerated or (2) after peeling in ice, refrigerated or frozen. Incoming quality evaluations are performed which include monitoring the temperature and condition of the shrimp and collecting samples for chemical analysis. Lots found unacceptable are rejected.
Shrimp delivered unpeeled are conveyed to a peeling machine which mechanically separates the heads and shells from the meat of the shrimp. They are then conveyed in water to a "scrubber" which loosens and removes any material remaining from the peeling operation.
Shrimp to be packed as deveined are conveyed to a deveining machine which mechanically removes sand veins from the shrimp.
Shrimp to be processed later may be frozen at this point and maintained in the frozen state until needed. Otherwise, it immediately proceeds to the cooking/cooling stage of the process.
When required for raw material received frozen, thawing is accomplished under controlled conditions, and sensory evaluations are conducted after thawing to assure acceptable quality.
Shrimp are given an initial cooking by being boiled in tanks following specified times and temperatures. Cooked shrimp are cooled quickly to maintain quality.
Cooked and cooled shrimp are sorted by size and inspected. Additional quality and sensory evaluations are performed at this stage.
Prescribed amounts of shrimp are placed in cans which have been previously cleaned. Liquid packing media and other ingredients are added either manually or by dispenser.
Filled cans are conveyed to sealing machines where lids are put in place and the cans hermetically sealed. Each can or lid is affixed with a permanent production code that identifies plant, product, date packed, and other pertinent information. The integrity of the hermetic seal is evaluated at frequent intervals during processing to ensure product safety.
Sealed cans are retorted (cooked) under pressure utilizing process time and temperature schedules designed by processing experts to render the product commercially sterile. All aspects of thermal processing are strictly monitored and controlled.
Samples of each finished production code receive qualitative (e.g., color, odor, flavor, texture, and cleaning) and quantitative evaluations prior to being released for labeling.
Product lots meeting finished product evaluation criteria are labeled and cased. Cased products are appropriately marked with information necessary to facilitate product tracing.
Cased products are shipped or staged in warehouses for later shipment.