Sahlman Seafoods of Nicaragua is a production company that farms, processes and markets raw shrimp. The company has received numerous awards, including the Best Practices in Aquaculture in Nicaragua. But most importantly, Sahlman Seafood went from an average of 60% yield on head on shell shrimp (HOSO) when packed, to reaching an impressive average of ca. 85-90% after switching to Promens Sæplast insulated containers and changing their handling process.
Shrimp processing at Sahlman Seafood, Nicaraqua. Picture courtesy of Salman Seafood.“Our company started in Nicaragua in 1996 as a farmed shrimp operation, complete with its own processing plant. The plant’s capacity is currently at 100,000 pounds per day and today we concentrate mainly on packaging farmed shrimp and wild caught shrimp” says Mr. Virgilio Castillo, Executive Director of Sahlman Seafoods.
“The main challenge in terms of quality preservation we faced was getting our harvested shrimp to our processing plant as fresh and fast as possible.” Mr. Castillo explained. “The goal is to drop the harvested shrimp temperature as quickly as possible to reduce the risk of melanosis and bacteria growth. Insulation and temperature control is key for achieving this. Producers need to rely on containers to transport the shrimps to the processing plant or to the final destination.”
At PROMENS, the global provider of SÆPLAST insulated containers, considerable effort is made in studying the perhaps most important function of insulated containers, i.e. thermal protection under various ambient conditions (Fig.1). “We are constantly seeking optimal solutions for the broad variety of our clients’ applications. Temperature is of utmost importance and thus, heat transfer modelling strongly supports our product development”, said Dr. Björn Margeirsson, Research Manager at PROMENS in Iceland.
This has benefited the cooperation between Promens and Sahlman Seafood. “Our product is all freshly frozen and shipped via refrigerated insulated containers to the different destinations. Over the years we tried different methods of transporting our harvested shrimp to the plant and we quickly found that the optimal method is to use the PROMENS insulated containers.” said Mr. Castillo.Shrimp being packed at Sahlman Seafood, Nicaragua. Picture courtesy of Salman Seafood.
The well-known value of insulated containers for improved product quality includes increased temperature control and protection against physical damage. In fact, poor handling and lack of suitable containers can lead to as much as 20-30% spoilage.
When asked why Sahlman Seafood prefers to use Promens products, Mr. Castillo laughed and said; “I can mention a few; excellent quality and very durable. In addition, Promens has kept its promise to fabricate containers in a specific colour only for our company in Nicaragua. This allows us to identify our containers in case they go missing.”