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Model Bankable Projects



Surimi Production

1. Introduction

At present the world fish production is around 122.3 million tonnes which comprises of 86.03 million tonnes of marine production and 29.50 million tonnes of inland production. The total fish production in India is about 5.96 million tonnes with a potential of 8.4 million tonnes. 67% of the exports in value are accounted by prawns. Fishermen in India throw away the by-catches of fish which are of no use to them. If Surimi production units are established in the country, the unwanted fish catch which is being thrown away can be processed into Surimi. Americans are using surimi processing technique in a big way. Surimi is the Japanese term for minced fish. Eighties have seen a sudden spurt in the surimi industry due to the following:

1. In surimi production underutilised and less utilised species can be used successfully as raw materials.

2. A variety of surimi based products can be prepared by altering the appearance and eating quality through application of various processing technologies and ingredients.

3. Current technology permits mass production with consistent quality.

4. Increasing demand of surimi products in international markets.

 2. Scope for surimi production in India

India is the largest country in the Indian Ocean and is having a long coastline of about 7500 kms with over 200 varieties of commercially important fishes and shell fishes. The estimated potential yield of fish at various depth zones is given below:


The important pelagic fishes constituting the total potential yield of 7.42 lakh tonnes in the 50-200 m. depth zone are the anchovies, carangids, ribbon fishes, tunas and sharks. Among these fishes the carangids and the ribbon fishes could be effectively utilised for surimi production in our country. The potential yield of the above varieties from the 0-200 m depth region of our continental shelf is given below:-

Species Potential yield 000 tonnes
Carangids 231
Ribbon Fishes 266

These varieties are rarely utilised in the domestic market, due to their low unit value realisation.



The demersal resources of the 50-200 m zone is estimated as 6.25 lakh tonnes of which 4.23 lakh tonnes can be caught from the 50-100 m. zone and the rest 2.02 lakh tonnes from the 100-200 m. region. A few varieties of this zone are known to produce high quality surimi and can be effectively utilised for value addition into surimi products. The potential source of such raw material varieties are given under:-

Species/Group Potential yield upto 50-200 m. depth (in'000 tonnes)
Thread fin bream 110.6
Bull's eye 54.8
Perches 14.6
Mackerels 62.2
Ribbon fishes 23.3
Trevally 17.1
Lizard fish 20.9
Barracuda 3.2
Clupeids 14.3


3. Technical Parameters

Details of the process involved in production of raw surimi and surimi based products are given in Annexure I.

4.Location of the project

The surimi processing unit can be located at sites carefully selected keeping in view of the abundant availability of raw material viz. various types of fishes and other infrastructural facilities like motorable roads, water, electricity, nearness to port etc. Before selection of site consultation with MPEDA may be desirable.

5. Borrower's profile

Complete details of the entrepreneurs, partnership firm, registered company should be given. Qualification and experience in the field, other activities undertaken by them, financial ability etc. have to be furnished.

6. Physical and financial outlay

Details of the physical and financial outlay for establishing a surimi production unit of 2500 tonnes per annum capacity are given in Annexure II. It can be seen therefrom that the total cost including working capital expenses (1st year 60% capacity utilisation) works out to Rs.536.00 lakhs. While submitting the project to the banks for sanction of loan, entrepreneurs are expected to submit detailed plan and estimates for all the civil works to be undertaken as also invoices of various items to be purchased from the suppliers.

7. Margin money and bank loan

The entrepreneur has to bring in 25% of the project cost out of his own resources and the balance of 75% will be provided by banks as bank loan. However, NABARD could consider providing margin money assistance in suitable and eligible cases as per the guidelines contained in circular No.DPD.67/ 92-93 dated 24.03.1993.

8. Interest rate for ultimate borrowers

Banks are free to decide the rate of interest within the overall RBI guidelines. However, for working out the financial viability and bankability of the model project we have assumed the rate of interest as 12% per annum.

9. Interest rate for refinance from NABARD

As per the circulars of NABARD issued from time to time.

10. Financial viability

For working out the income and expenditure from the surimi production unit the following assumptions have been made:-

Capacity of the unit 10 tonnes per diem
No. of working days

250 days

Capacity utilisation 1st year - 60%

2nd year - 70%

3rd year - 80%

4th year - 90% onwards

Income at maximum capacity utilisationof 90% - Quantum of surimi produced 2250 metric tonnes
Income from sale of surimi @ Rs.36.000/- per m.t. for 2250 m.t.

(US $ 1200 per m.t.)

810 lakhs

The financial analysis has been shown in Annexure III. Results of the analysis are as under


i NPW at 15% D.F. - Rs. 404.02 lakhs

ii BCR AT 15% D.F. - 1.67:1

iii IRR is more than 50%

11. Marketing

As already indicated there is an increasing demand for surimi products in international markets. Eighties have seen a sudden spurt in the surimi industry especially in the western countries due to the popularity of some surimi based products. For establishing marketing tie-up the entrepreneurs may get in touch with MPEDA offices. Japan is one of the big importer of fisheries product from India.

12. Repayment period

As can be seen from Annexure IV the borrower will be able to repay the bank loan in 5 years with a moratorium of one year on repayment of principal.

13. Security

Banks may take a decision as per RBI guidelines.

14. Conclusion

As indicated in the above paragraphs, the project to establish surimi production unit is technically feasible and financially viable. It is recommended that banks can consider such projects for financing.



Details of the process involved in Surimi production

The process - Raw surimi and surimi based products

When fish flesh is separated from bones and skin, it is called minced fish which forms the starting material for surimi production. When minced fish is water washed to remove water soluble components and fats it becomes raw surimi. The raw surimi which is a wet concentrate of myofibrillar proteins possesses enchaned gel forming, water holding, fat binding capacities compared to the minced fish. These functional properties are reduced rapidly once it is frozen. In order to maintain the functional properties, the raw surimi is mixed with cryoprotectants such as sugars or alcohols and are quick frozen in blocks and stored. These compact blocks are convenient to handle and can be economically transported. This frozen surimi becomes the raw material for manufacture of surimi based products. The raw surimi is ground with salt and other ingredients, then extruded, fiberised or composite moulded depending upon the final products and finally heated to set the shape, develop the texture and pasteurize the products. The type of heat treatment used is altered to vary the flavour, texture and appearance desired in the final products and may include steaming, broiling, boiling and deep fat frying. The process is explicity depicated in the flow diagram given below:-


Deheading and Gutting

Meat separation





Raw Surimi

Mixing Cryoprotectants

Freezing into Blocks


Grinding with Salt and Ingredients

Heat Processing


2. The Surimi manufacturing process

The widely used technique for surimi manufacture is the modified version of rotary rinser/screw press method. This has evolved through successfull cooperation among fish technologists, processors and fishing companies. The factors that must be considered and controlled to ensure good quality surimi is given below:-

1. Freshness is the most important requirement as it affects the gel forming capacity of the surimi. The fish should always be kept at a temperature below 0o C and processed within 2 days of catch.

2. The catch has to be sorted out for the target species and size manually. This sorting will improve processing speed and yield of fillets. Washing and scaling should be done simultaneously.

3. Filleting will influence the quality and quantity of mince. Filleting involves - decapitation evisceration and excision of the backbone yielding a boneless fillet. The presence of viscera gills, heart etc. will affect the quality of surimi and therefore should be removed.

4. The most common meat separator is a belt drum type. The diameter of the holes chosen for the roller greatly influences the subsequent leaching and dewatering process, yield and ultimately the quality of the surmi. As per the size and freshness of the fish the hole diameter is chosen and it generally ranges from 4-7 mm. In order to increase the efficiency of thermal separation the fillets should be placed in such a way that maximum surface area of the meat is in contact with the drum.

5. Leaching in fresh (non-salt) water is carried out to remove water soluble matter, lipids and blood. This improves the colour, flavour and the gel strength of surimi. Although the optimal time varies with the freshness of the raw material, water temperature and size of the meat particles, 15-20 minutes for the entire leaching process is usually regarded as appropriate for any commercial operation. Two washings are generally regarded adequate from the gel strength point of view. The pH of the wash water should be adjusted to 6.5 to 7.0 to ensure maximum functional performance of fish protein. The temperature of the wash water should be 3-10oC to recue microbial proliferation and protein denaturation.

6. The amount of water required for washing will be (10-20) times the amount of mince, in shore based units. The final intermediate dewatering is carried out to keep the moisture content around 90%. The fine particles lost from the screens and screen press during intermediate dewatering can be recovered using centrifugation.

7. Refining of the partially dewatered and leached mince is carried out to remove the connective tissues, skin scale or any undesirable inclusions using a strainer. Of late, refining is done prior to final dewatering.

8. Final dewatering is done by screw press for reducing water content to about 80-94%.

9. Blending of cryoprotective agents helps to stabilise fish proteins from freeze denaturation and frozen storage. The percentage of these additives are:-

Sugar - 4% Sorbitol - 4-5% Polyphosphate - 0.2-0.3% (cryoprotective additive) The actual quantities of the above ingredients/cryprotectants should be uniformly dissolved and dispersed using a blending apparatus. Quality filling and freezing into blocks, are done by automated machines. The equipment is operated in such a manner so as to obtain a block center at (-) 25oC or below. The blocks thus obtained are stored and shipped preferably at - 25oC. Surimi is normally traded in 10 kg. frozen blocks which are individually wrapped in waxed cardboard boxes.



Estimated physical and financial outlay involved for setting up

a surimi production unit of 2500 tonne capacity per annum ( Illustrative )

   Capital Cost (Rs. lakh)
Cost of surimi line (imported component) (10 tonnes per diem capacity) 150
Cost of 90 minutes plate freezer (10 tonnes per diem) (Indigenous) 15
Cold storage (250 ton capacity) 25
Transformer (750 KVA) 5
Generator Set (500 KVA) 15
Ultra violet ray water purifier (1000 litres/hr) 1
Civil construction (plant room, office room, cleaning room and labour room etc.) 25
Electrification 3
Borewell/water conveyance structures, pumping mechanism, storage etc. 5
Miscellaneous 6
Total 250

Recurring expenses : Calculated for maximum capacity utilisation (90%)

1 Raw material -7500 tonne@ Rs.500 per tonne 375.00
2 Additional (sugar, sorbitol, poly phosphate etc.) 240 tonnes @ Rs.2,000/tonne 4.80
3 a) Power

b) Refrigerant and fuel



4 Labour (salaries and wages) 12.00
5 Administrative expenses

(Rs.1.50 lakh as salary and Rs. 1.50 lakh and other expenses)

6 Packaging and marketing expenses (Rs.100/tonne of finished goods) 2.25
7 Miscellaneous expenses (approx. 10% of the recurring expenditure) 5.00
   Total 429.73
      Say 430 lakhs



(Rs. lakh) 

A. COST               
Fixed Cost 250.000            
Recurring Cost 286.000 334.000 382.000 430.000 430.000
Total Cost 536.000 334.000 382.000 430.000 430.000
B. BENEFIT 540.000 630.000 720.000 810.000 810.000
Net Income 4.000 296.000 338.000 380.000 380.000
DF at 15% 0.870 0.756 0.658 0.572 1.632
Present Worth of Cost at DF 15% 466.320 252.500 251.360 245.960 701.760 = 1917.900
Present Worth of Benefits at DF 15% 469.800 476.280 473.760 463.320 1321.92 =3205.080
NPW       404.02      
BCR       1.67      
DF at 50% 0.667 0.44 0.296 0.197 0.317
NPW at 50% 2.668 131.420 100.050 74.860 120.46 = 429.458
IRR > 50%               



Total Outlay = Rs.536.000 lakh

Margin (25%) = Rs.134.000 lakh

Bank Loan = Rs.402.000 lakh

(Rs. lakh)                         

Year Bank
Net income Repayment Bank loan outstan
ding at the
end of the year
Net surplus
Interest @ 12% Principal Total
402.000 540.000 48.240   48.240 402.000 491.760
402.000 296.000 48.240 100.000 148.240 302.000 147.760
302.000 338.000 36.240 100.000 136.240 202.000 201.760
202.000 380.000 24.240 100.000 124.240 102.000 255.760
102.000 380.000 12.240 102.000 114.240   265.760

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