6 differences between traditional fish sauce and industrial fish sauce

Industrial fish sauce is made up of a dilution of traditional fish sauce and add flavor enhancers, coloring, preserving, creating …

1. Ingredients

Dr. Tran Thi Dung (former scientific officer of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development) said that traditional fish sauce formed from the process of decomposing fish in salt salt with at least 8 months or more. In the composition only fish and salt. Some establishments may add flavor enhancer when mixed (sweetener, MSG) to reduce salinity and also specify in the composition.

Industrial fish sauce is made up of a dilution of traditional fish sauce, then mixes more than a dozen flavor enhancers, coloring, preservatives, acidity regulators, creating comparisons … Thus, public fish sauce The industry can generate in one to two days, at a lower cost.

By reading the ingredient information on the product label, consumers can initially distinguish between natural and traditional natural products.

Nước mắm cốt truyền thống nhỉ ra từ thùng gỗ và có màu hổ phách. Ảnh: Lê Gia.
Traditional fish sauce is coming out of the wooden crate and amber in color. Photo: Le Gia.

Mr. Le Anh – owner of a brand of traditional fish sauce, said that incense is the most distinguishable criteria between traditional and industrial fish sauce.

Accordingly, the delicious traditional sauce will bring a natural aroma from the sea, from the fish, soft and greasy. The scent is specific to each region, the type of fish used and the different methods of brewing.

There is a traditional fish sauce that has a strong odor due to the stirring salt method – adding salt several times and the fish source is no longer fresh so the rot-causing microorganisms thrive.

And industrial fish sauce uses artificial flavors to create its own smell.

3. Taste

According to Mr. Le Anh, traditional fish sauce has a strong salty taste and natural sweetness of amino acid protein. When tasting feels like the tip of the tongue is salty, then spread to sweet to the throat should be called sweet aftertaste.

Industrial fish sauce has a sweet taste of saccharine and flavor. The sweetness melts quickly on the tip of the tongue and has no aftertaste.

Màu cánh gián của mắm truyền thống (trái) và màu vàng của mắm công nghiệp (phải).

Cockroach wings of traditional sauce (left) and yellow of industrial sauce (right)..

4. Colors

Standard traditional sauce is usually yellow to brown wing cockroach (or amber), depending on the type of fish used for composting and processing technology of the region. When it is left for a long time, it can turn dark black due to the oxidation of natural substances (the process is quick or slow depending on the composition), Mr. Le Anh said.

Meanwhile industrial fish sauce is light yellow. Due to the coloring and preservatives, no change in color can be made even after preparation and for a long time.

5. Protein

Dr. Tran Thi Dung said that protein is an important criterion for many people when choosing traditional fish sauce, but consumers need to understand protein. If it is traditional sauce, the protein is very difficult to overcome 40 gN / l (varies slightly depending on specific conditions). Fish sauce up to 50, 60 degrees of protein often apply vacuum concentration method to increase the protein and naturally the amount of salt will decrease (the higher the protein sauce, the lower the salt content). Therefore, if it is natural sauce, the protein ranges from 25-40 depending on the region of delicious type.

Industrial fish sauce has a much lower amount of protein. Moreover, this protein can come from the preparation, not necessarily diluted from traditional sauce.

6. Price

Traditional sauce currently ranges from VND 80,000 / liter (for fish sauce with a protein content of about 20 gN / l) to several hundred thousand VND / liter (fish sauce has a protein content of over 40gN / l). And industrial fish sauce is half as cheap. Price of protein content of 10 gN / l is about VND 40,000, Dr. Dung said.

Phan Duong

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