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Saudi J Biol Sci. 2019 Jan;26(1):137-140. doi: 10.1016/j.sjbs.2017.04.003. Epub 2017 Apr 12.

Microbiological and chemical quality of a traditional salted-fermented fish (Hout-Kasef) product of Jazan Region, Saudi Arabia.

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Department of Food Science and Nutrition, College of Food and Agricultural Sciences, King Saud University, P.O. Box 2460, Riyadh 11451, Saudi Arabia.


The Hout-Kasef is traditional salted fermented fish product of natural fermentation of salted mullet fish of coastal area of Jazan region of Saudi Arabia. The present study was carried out to investigate the microbiological and chemical characteristic of Hout-Kasef. A total of twenty-four salted fish samples were purchased from fish market in Jazan and Abu-Arish at different times of the year. The microbial studies of salted-fermented fish revealed a total bacterial count ranging from 2.81 to 4.72 Log10 CFU/g, yeast and mold counts ranging from 0.48 to 3.14 Log10 CFU/g, total staphylococci count 2.71-3.85 Log10 CFU/g, halophile bacteria count 3.26-5.14 Log10 CFU/g, and coliforms count <1 Log10 CFU/g. However, pathogenic bacteria such as Listeria monocytogenes, Vibrio spp., Campylobacter spp. and Yersinia species were not detected. The major bacteria species isolated and identified from the salted fermented fish were Bacillus Subtilus, Bacillus mycoides, Bacillus licheniformis, Bacillus pumilus, Staphylococcus aureus, Staphylococcus epidermidis, Staphylococcus hominis, Staphylococcus xylosus, Staphylococcus saprophticus and Staphylococcus cahnii subsp cahnii. The chemical analysis of salted fermented fish showed high content of moisture (47.96%), protein (25.71%), ash (19.6%) and salt (15.19%) but low contents of lipid (7.25%). The salted-fermented fish also showed high level of total volatile basic nitrogen (78.86 mg/100 gm sample) and thiobarbutric acid number (32.32 mg malonaldehyde/kg) with a pH value of pH 6.3. Finally, this study showed the presence of gram positive and gram negative bacteria in the fish product. The predominant microorganisms found were Bacillus and Staphylococcus spp. The fish product had high content of salt and TVB-N levels.


Halophilic bacteria; Hout-Kasef; Microbial quality; Salted-fermented fish; TVB-N

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