Vaessen Schoemaker marketing novel solution for high-value fish trimmings

Vaessen Commercial Director Jordi Alvarez showing one of the products that can be made with the company's equipment
Vaessen Schoemaker is bringing techniques from its meat industry expertise to the seafood industry to utilize byproducts | Photo by Chris Chase/SeafoodSource
4 Min

Barcelona, Spain-based processing equipment manufacturer Vaessen Schoemaker is bringing its knowhow in the meat industry to seafood.

In its first time exhibiting at Seafood Expo Global – running from 23 to 25 April in Barcelona, Spain – the company was showing off technology and processing techniques to aid seafood companies better utilize their byproducts. The processes and molds, commonly used by the meat industry to produce items like deli meat, can be applied to seafood to help generate added value out of waste products, Vaessen Commercial Director Jordi Alvarez told SeafoodSource. 

Vaessen is a subsidiary of Process-Pack, an Eschborn, Germany-based company with a global footprint. Alvarez said Spain is Vaessen's primary target market, and that the company is responding to a drive in the seafood industry to reduce waste and innovate new products. 

“We saw that the fish industry is opening the doors to different kinds of products, they are doing more processed products,” Alvarez said. “They are starting to think about what to do with the waste that they have, the parts that aren’t as good, that they are selling at a very cheap price.”

Alvarez said companies working with higher-priced species, such as tuna and salmon, can benefit from Vaessen's technology, which can turn trimmings and other wasted product into a log. That larger, single piece is combined with natural fish protein, and can be sliced to create a product that mimics the original, or can be cut up into shapes for foodservice or retail applications. 

“You can slice, you can have a carpaccio, you can have a fillet,” Alvarez said. “Many people have been saying they can use this for sushi because it is square and they can cut it into slices and put it into a roll of sushi.”

Alvarez said another benefit of the technology is that can be easily fit into a company’s existing processing line.  The process adds minimal energy requirements and can be done using the refrigerators that most seafood companies already have, since it produces a fresh product that's not cooked.

Vaessen also has a number of other processing solutions on offer, but Alvarez said the technique to utilize byproducts has been the company's biggest success, primarily due to the chef demonstrations of the product Vaessen has conducted at Seafood Expo Global and other trade shows.

“We decided to show cooking, showing the products, because we think the best way to show what you’re doing is to show the final product,” he said.  

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