Corn snacks fortified with omega-3 fish oil and fish protein powder through seasoning are accepted by children and stable but shelf-life is limited to 12 weeks, a new study finds.
Published in the Journal of Food Processing and Preservation the study incorporated omega-3 fish oil and fish protein powder into seasoning mixes with cheddar cheese powder and vegetable oil.
The study found 96% of children aged 7-12 years old liked the snacks and expressed that they would choose them if on the market.
“The overall conclusion is that seasoning of extruded corn snacks with fishery-derived products would be an option to provide nutrient snacks for kids and to increase fish consumption,” researchers wrote.
A pinch of seasoning and stint of shelf-life
Findings showed that seasoning of the snacks with 18% fish protein powder and 17% omega-3 fish oil did not influence sensory attributes within the 12 weeks of storage. The researchers said these levels were optimal.
However, seasoning with levels larger than this “may not be feasible due to sensory properties”.
The study found that storage time influenced attributes related to lipid oxidation, such as off-odors and flavors. However, these only occurred in the prototypes after 12 weeks of storage; particularly after 16 weeks.
Negative sensory changes happened more in snacks seasoned with fish oil.
Researchers said these negative sensory changes in storage after 12 weeks could be remedied with the use of natural antioxidants in the snacks to prevent or reduce lipid oxidation and preserve sensory qualities.
The study investigated liking and sensory stability of seasoned extruded corn snacks with fish powder and omega-3 fish oil during 16 weeks storage at ambient temperature.
In total it used 28 seasoning formulas using cheddar cheese powder and vegetable oil - 14 with omega-3 fish oil and 14 with fish protein powder. These prototypes were tested alongside control samples of corn snacks seasoned with regular ingredients.
Consumer surveys were given to 105 students in Iran (55% girls, 45% boys) aged 7-12 years to assess likeability. Sensory analysis on the prototypes was conducted with a panel of nine experts.
“The market demand for extruded corn-fish snack – a commercialized Persian product – is growing in Iran. So the idea (of seasoning extruded corn collets with fish protein/or omega-3 fish oil) was generated to respond to this segment of the market. On the other hand, the market for children’s snack food has grown, and children’s influence on food purchase decisions is increasing.”
“Fortification of existing products with fisher-derived products can not only provide nutritive foods for health-conscious consumers but also can promote increasing fish consumption,” the researchers wrote.
Source: Journal of Food Processing and Preservation
Published online ahead of print, doi: 10.1111/jfpp.12068
“Interactions and Effects of the Seasoning Mixture Containing Fish Protein Powder/Omega-3 Fish Oil on Children’s Liking and Stability of Extruded Corn Snacks Using a Mixture Design Approach”
Authors: A.R Shaviklo, A.K Dehkordi and P. Zangeneh