Preprocessing

Before eels are processed, they are graded according to size (Fig. 9). One way of preparing them is by putting them in a deep container and sprinkling them with salt. This treatment removes their slime until they die of asphyxiation. Another way is by putting them in fresh water and stunning them with an electric shock (10). Or they may simply be put in cold storage overnight. In this way, eel activities can be slowed down, and thus they can easily be handled for gutting or deboning.

Figure 8. Eels readied for the market. Eels are packed in polyethylene bags inflated with oxygen. (Note oxygen tank and corrugated cardboard boxes in background.)
Figure 9. Eels being graded according to size.
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