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Salmon Processing

Watch a video on how salmon are caught and processed.

Upon arrival of the salmon at the cannery, the fish are quickly unloaded from the tender and sorted according to size and species. The salmon are then loaded into indexer and extractor machines to remove the heads and the eggs. Next, a cleaning machine removes the fins, tail, scales, and entrails, and the fish move to the cleaning tables where they are thoroughly washed. At the beginning of the canning line, the fish are cut into steaks to fit the height of the can. A filling machine then automatically fills each can with salmon and adds a salt tablet. Cans are weighed and any fill or weight variances are corrected.

Lids are then attached to the can, stamped with a production code, and sealed onto the can with a seamer. A vacuum is also drawn. Cans are washed and inspected prior to being retorted. Cans are loaded onto trays and moved into retort ovens where they are cooked for the calculated amount of time needed to sterilize the contents. After retorting, they are cooled before being palletized and shipped to facilities where the cans are individually labeled and packed ready for distribution to the market where they are available to consumers across North America.