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Seafood Processing



Alaskan Cod produced with Rotex™ onboard. From the rough waters of the Bering sea to Dutch Harbour, Alaska, Skaginn 3X’s RoteX™ bleeding and chilling tanks onboard the Northern Leader longliner have helped produce some of the highest quality cod on the market.

Alaskan Leader Fisheries, one of the largest longline businesses in the US, has operated two RoteX™ bleeding and chilling tanks onboard their flagship 184-foot factory vessel the Northern Leader for over 7 years. Northern Leader is the second largest ship in the Alaska longline fleet, towing some 50 miles of line with 76,000 hooks. Designed to ensure the highest possible product quality, RoteX’s temperature and bleeding times are computer-controlled to maintain the high quality of the longline caught Alaskan wild cod.

Advanced ‘Frozen at Sea’ production line

As Alaska’s seafood is managed for protection against overfishing, habitat damage and pollution, Alaskan Leader Fisheries emphasizes sustainability in both the design of their vessels and their fishing operations. Onboard processing is approached in the same sustainable way. Their vessels are equipped with high quality processing machinery chosen to support their sustainability measures.

Sustainable from the start

Northern Leader’s production line is one of the most innovative built in the US in decades, capable of processing and holding up to 1.7 million pounds of frozen product. “We designed the Northern Leader to be sustainable from the start,” says Keith Singleton, president of Alaskan Leader’s value-added division. “The technology from Skaginn 3X suited our approach well as our onboard processing line required advanced equipment to help produce some of the best wild Alaskan cod on the market.”

Innovation maintains the high quality of wild Alaskan cod

The innovative technology behind the RoteX™ screw tanks ensures uniform bleeding and regulated chilling of each fish. Every fish gets the same treatment as the first fish into the system is the first one out. Uniform bleeding and chilling time are integral to keeping the quality of the catch intact.

“Our onboard system is extremely efficient and we designed it to maintain the quality from the moment the fish enters the deck until it is frozen and packed,” says Singleton. “The catch on the Northern Leader is processed in less than an hour and the RoteX™ system has been instrumental in locking in the quality and freshness we expect from our products.”

Patented technology

The fish is conveyed gently through the RoteX™ bleeding tank where patented side injection circulates seawater to ensure good bleeding. After heading and gutting, the fish enters the second RoteX™ screw tank which chills and cleans the fish prior to freezing, using side injection of seawater and slurry ice to maintain the cooling temperature. This maintains the high quality of the wild Alaskan cod caught by the Northern Leader.

Computer controlled efficiency

Both RoteX™ screw tanks are electrically driven and are controlled with Skaginn 3X’s On-Track computer control system. The system can be remotely monitored and controlled from the vessel’s bridge, where adjustments to speed and operating parameters such as water flow and water temperature are easy to make. All measured temperatures, process and control values are stored in the On-Track system. Computer controlled bleeding and chilling results in reduced energy usage for better sustainability and a superior product.

Product quality from the get-go

“We have seen how the RoteX™ technology has supported product quality on the Northern Leader’s production line from the start,” says Arnthor Halldorsson, Regional Sales Manager at Skaginn 3X. “For an innovative company like Skaginn 3X it is an honour to work with pioneering companies like Alaskan Leader Fisheries and contribute to the production of high quality seafood products that are sourced in a sustainable way.”

Built to last

Great innovation is not enough though. For a tough crew of men working in some of the harshest conditions at sea, the equipment onboard Northern Leader needs to meet the highest standards for durability, performance and reliability. Made of high quality glass beaded stainless steel with food grade certified plastics, the RoteX™ screw tanks meet these requirements. Designed to operate in the harshest of conditions, the onboard RoteX™ tanks are built to last.