Effective reduction of PAH contamination in smoke cured fish products using charcoal filters in a modified traditional kiln
Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) contaminations in Ghanaian smoke-cured fish are known to be in high levels. This may be linked to the recent upsurge of cancer cases among the population because PAHs are well-known carcinogens. A modified traditional kiln fitted with charcoal filters to remove PAHs by adsorption from the smoke before it contacted the fish being smoke-cured was designed. Smoke-curing was done for 4 h with three most used smoke wood types- in Ghana namely acacia, sugarcane bagasse and mangroves. The smoking was done with no charcoal filter and compared to smoking with two types of activated charcoals fitted to the designed traditionally modified kiln. PAHs in smoke-cured fish samples (n = 108) using the designed system were analysed using Varian GC/MS (3800-GC) system. The mean total PAHs levels in the experimental smoked fish samples analysed ranged from 212.56 to 472.98 μg/kg in samples smoke cured with – activated charcoal filters. The mean percent reductions (efficiency of Kiln) were 21–69%. The mean Benzo[a]pyrene levels in all fish cured using the modified traditional kiln with charcoal filters in place were below the Turkish Codex’s maximum limit of 2.0 μg/kg. An ANOVA analysis conducted at 95% CL showed statistically significant differences (P < 0.05) in PAH levels between smoking with no charcoal filters and those with charcoal as filters. No statistical significant differences (P > 0.05) were obtained between the two smoking processes with charcoal filters. Fish obtained from the modified traditional kiln were of good organoleptic quality (moisture content < 65% as recommended) and the use of charcoal filters in fish smoking should be encouraged.
Read full paper https://doi.org/10.1016/j.foodcont.2013.06.045