China’s first fully automatic salmon processing line


A new Marel processing line has been installed at Shanghai Hi-Chain Foods’ salmon processing facility near Shanghai.

The project is a watershed installation for Marel in China, as it is the country’s first automatic processing line for salmon.

The plant produces up to 30 metric tons of salmon products per day and the Marel installation includes filleting, trimming, pinbone removal, skinning, portioning and slicing equipment. Shanghai Hi-Chain Foods also processes tuna, king crab and other seafood.

In recent years, Chinese salmon processors have increasingly sought out hi-tech processing equipment in order to improve performance and food safety, to raise yield and to reduce costs.

This project began after Mr. Li, General Manager of Hi-Chain, attended the 2016 Salmon ShowHow in order to find out more about what Marel could offer in terms of advanced salmon processing technology.

The showhow is held in Copenhagen each year and invites salmon processors to experience Marel’s equipment and software first hand in a simulated processing plant environment. 

Mr. Li was especially interested in Marel’s filleting lines, which he saw for the first time at the showhow, and he left the event convinced that Marel could help Hi-Chain produce superior quality salmon products for its customers, whose demand for quality keeps growing.

A deal was made and the equipment was installed in August 2017. During the start-up phase, Marel provided training to Hi-Chain employees.

Training is an integral part of Marel’s service, especially when a facility is taking such a big step in terms of automation, and both Hi-Chain and Marel made every effort to ensure that both the factory and employees were prepared for the installation.

The installation marked a shift in the nature of many of the jobs at the factory and Marel’s local service engineer in China, along with its service engineers from Denmark, were in close contact with Hi-Chain from the start, to answer questions and assist with troubleshooting.

The Hi-Chain plant has been fully operational since the end of August 2017.

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