Transported with care in an unbroken cool chain, fresh salmon are unpacked at Morpol’s dedicated plant in Ustka on the Baltic coast of Northern Poland. They are rapidly processed by a combination of automated and artisanal hand preparation to become a wide range of delicious, high-quality salmon products. Efficient people, equipment and workflow mean the salmon are processed, packaged and despatched in just 24 hours.
The Ustka plant is purpose designed and unique to Morpol, as is the processing and smoking equipment. It is the largest and most technologically advanced salmon processing facility in the world, producing a wide variety of cold-smoked, hot-smoked, chilled, frozen and speciality products. The latest investments further optimised the workflow and expanded capacity. Combined with the skilled workforce and massive scale of operation, this has taken processing efficiency to unprecedented levels.
Whole fish are de-headed—heads are exported to the Far East—then divided into two fillets that are hand trimmed. Belly meat is carefully removed to provide Harasu for the Japanese market. Trimmed fillets are hand salted then allowed to cure in controlled conditions, before drying to concentrate the flavour and optimise the texture.
Salmon smoking is carried out in Morpol’s unique chambers using locally sourced beech chippings. Fillets are gently cold smoked at 28 °C, then sliced, prepared and packed to match customer specifications. Hot smoking of seasoned portions is at 67 °C. After cooling, they are packaged in accordance with customer specifications.
Other fresh salmon are processed into constant weight portions, steaks and a variety of products before chilling or freezing. The trimmings are converted into outstanding added value specialities and any remaining material is supplied to the pet food industry: maximising the yield from every fish.
Satellite plants in Poland conduct further customisation (Laurin) and value added processing (Specialities). Specialist facilities in Harsum, Germany, and Cuisery, France, carry out additional slicing and packaging to match customer-specific requirements in those countries.