One se­cond stun­ner

Fish can be ren­dered un­con­scious prior to pump­ing with ex­cit­ing new tech­nol­ogy

Fish Farmer - - Aqua Nor preview -

Cur­rent har­vest­ing tech­niques re­quire fish to be re­moved from the wa­ter af­ter pump­ing and to be hit with a pneu­matic ham­mer, or stunned in air with elec­tric­ity. Ace Aquatec has pi­o­neered the first sub­merged salt­wa­ter elec­tri­cal pipe­line stun­ner that al­lows fish to be stunned within the trans­port pipe. No un­nec­es­sary and stress­ful han­dling of the fish is un­der­taken.

Us­ing this method the fish can be stunned as fast as the spec­i­fi­ca­tion of the pump suck­ing the fish from the cage. In other words, one stun­ning line can achieve stun­ning speeds of 75 tonnes per hour, and sev­eral stun­ning lines can be used – 100 per cent of the fish, re­gard­less of size or species, are guar­an­teed to be stunned.

Higher cor­ti­sol, or stress, in fish leads to poor qual­ity and shorter shelf life. As farmed salmon are of­ten held in the hold­ing pens for a pe­riod to re­duce stress, the most stress­ful pe­riod prior to slaugh­ter oc­curs in the trans­porta­tion pipe, namely when the fish pass through the pump­ing sys­tem.

But what if the fish could be stunned be­fore the pump? To date, no hu­mane slaugh­ter sys­tem has been ca­pa­ble of a pre-pump stun.

Now Ace Aquatec’s lat­est in-wa­ter pipe­line stun­ner in com­bi­na­tion with Euskan’s suc­tion pump al­lows the fish to be stunned within one me­tre of the trans­port pipe and for the fish to be held in the elec­tric field through the pump and up onto the bleed­ing ta­ble.

In this way a hu­mane stun is guar­an­teed that does not sub­ject the fish to un­nec­es­sary stress. This is good for the fish and good for the cus­tomer.

• Pre-pump stun­ning is achiev­able only by stun­ning in salt­wa­ter. Highly so­phis­ti­cated elec­tron­ics have been de­vel­oped to cater for high power lev­els at up to 75 kw. Touch­screen oper­a­tion and re­mote data up­load en­ables set­tings to be up­dated in real time.

• Pre-pump stun­ning re­quires the de­vel­op­ment of ap­pro­pri­ate pump­ing meth­ods to carry un­con­scious fish. Ace Aquatec’s so­lu­tion has been de­vel­oped with pump ex­pert Euskan to cre­ate a so­lu­tion from cage side to bleed­ing ta­ble that works.

• In wa­ter stun­ning re­quires novel ap­proaches to re­duce power loss through highly con­duc­tive sea wa­ter. Ace Aquatec has de­vel­oped wa­ter re­duc­tion and re-in­tro­duc­tion pro­cesses within its pipework to solve this prob­lem.

• High power os­cil­lat­ing elec­tric fields can be very prob­lem­atic for

metal within such a sys­tem, and sig­nif­i­cant re­sources have been spent de­vel­op­ing highly durable elec­trodes for this ap­pli­ca­tion.

• Time and ex­pense has gone into ex­per­i­ment­ing with dif­fer­ent elec­tric fields to cre­ate a sys­tem flex­i­ble enough to stun all com­mer­cial fish species, of any size and at pro­duc­tion speeds. This elec­tric stun­ning sys­tem has a large range of pa­ram­e­ters that can pro­tect against spine dam­age and blood spot­ting, while guar­an­tee­ing that all fish that pass through it are hu­manly slaugh­tered re­gard­less of size.

• This pipe­line sys­tem can also be in­cor­po­rated into any com­mer­cial farm­ing con­text with in­stal­la­tions on wild fish boats, on shore side or in re­cir­cu­la­tion fac­to­ries. The equip­ment re­quires very lit­tle main­te­nance as there are no mov­ing parts.

• The sys­tem can also be pro­grammed with a stun to re­cover set­ting mean­ing the sys­tem could be used in re­place­ment of anaes­thetic treat­ment dur­ing vac­ci­na­tions, sav­ing farms on chem­i­cal costs. This sys­tem can re­duce costs by in­creas­ing ca­pac­ity over other sys­tems, re­duc­ing de­lays due to dam­age or re­pair, and re­quir­ing less man­ual su­per­vi­sion.

Above: Pipe­line sys­tem in­stalled at Abick in Chile; Right: Pre Pump stun­ner lay­out courtesy of Euskan

Above: Stun­ner at Swiss Alpine

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