Technological watch

Advances in the Formation and Control Methods of Undesirable Flavors in Fish

Undesirable flavor formation in fish is a dynamic biological process, decreasing the overall flavor quality of fish products and impeding the sale of fresh fish. This review extensively summarizes chemical compounds contributing to undesirable flavors and their sources or formation. Specifically, hexanal, heptanal, nonanal, 1−octen−3−ol, 1−penten−3−ol, (E,E)−2,4−heptadienal, (E,E)−2,4−decadienal, trimethylamine, dimethyl sulfide, 2−methyl−butanol, etc., are characteristic compounds causing off−odors. These volatile compounds are mainly generated via enzymatic reactions, lipid autoxidation, environmentally derived reactions, and microbial actions. A brief description of progress in existing deodorization methods for controlling undesirable flavors in fish, e.g., proper fermenting, defatting, appropriate use of food additives, and packaging, is also presented. Lastly, we propose a developmental method regarding the multifunctional natural active substances made available during fish processing or packaging, which hold great potential in controlling undesirable flavors in fish due to their safety and efficiency in deodorization.

Publication date: 19/08/2022

Author: Tianle Wu

Reference: doi: 10.3390/foods11162504

MDPI (foods)


This project has received funding from the Bio Based Industries Joint Undertaking under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 837761.