Processed fish roes are acquiring considerable importance in the modern food market, entering more and more often as an ingredient in food preparation and as caviar substitutes. In this study, we defined quality, traceability and safety issues related to processed fish roe products from different species. The results obtained allowed to distinguish eggs originated from different fish species and to discriminate between fish roes and caviar samples obtained from four different sturgeons species. We observed that roes showed a trend of grouping according to ecological and reproductive habits of fish species. We highlighted the differences between eggs originated by farmed and freshwater fish, enriched in n6 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs), and all the others, in which n3 PUFAs were prevalent. In addition, we evaluated processed fish roes under a food safety point of view, combining microbiological analysis with the determination of organic acids, used in some products as authorized preservatives. Microbiological characterization has proved a general good hygienic level for these products. Organic acids determination showed values in compliance with European Union (EU) regulations in almost of samples; in some cases, we found a mismatch between the organic acids detected and what was reported in labels. Processed fish roes could be considered a safe product that can provide to human nutrition a valuable content of essential fatty acids.
Research. Development. Production.
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