Denomega has strict quality control through the entire value chain from crude oil to the end products.
Denomega has a stringent quality system based on GMP and our own laboratories with highly trained staff ensure that the product quality always complies with our specifications. Our quality assurance and HACCP teams with long experience from pharmaceutical and food production interacts closely with the production sites aiming for continuous improvements.
We analyse several quality parameters and the greatest focus is on odour and taste. Our products are the best there is and our Omega-360 range is guaranteed to have no odour and taste when you receive it. We do sensory testing as part of our quality control in the factories, and have our own R&D sensory panel in our headquarters in Sarpsborg. We also utilise an external panel with trained panellists who are not employed by Denomega to assess our products whenever the need arises.
Other quality parameters you will find in our certificates of analyses are:
When oils rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids are exposed to the oxygen in air, they easily oxidise. The first oxidation products that are formed are hydroperoxides. Hydroperoxides are measured as the Peroxide Value (PV). Hydroperoxides does not have odour or taste, but they are generally unstable and will easily decompose to secondary oxidation products that may give the oil a typical “fish oil flavour”. The PV can be said to be a snapshot of how much oxygen the oil has been exposed to recently. A high PV doesn’t necessarily mean that the oil tastes bad but it may mean that it will develop rancid odour and taste relatively fast compared to oil with lower PV.
Secondary oxidation products of polyunsaturated fatty acids may be volatile, low-molecular compounds with potent odour and taste, or oxidised triglycerides that may form oligomers. The volatile compounds comprises aldehydes, ketones, alcohols, hydrocarbons, acids etc. and some of these compounds have very low sensory thresholds so they may be noticeable even in very low concentrations. The level of unsaturated aldehydes is measured by the anisidine value (AV), which includes volatile compounds as well as core aldehydes that are part of triglyceride mother-molecules. The AV can be said to express the history of the oil. Oil with high AV may taste OK after processing, but the previous rough handling leading to the high AV may leave the oil more unstable in the long run. Due to this, we aim to keep our anisidine values low and to handle the oil very carefully throughout the process until it reaches the customers. We are working constantly to improve processing parameters, antioxidant systems, and packaging to protect the oil towards oxidation.
To assess the true quality of oils, the peroxide value should be evaluated together with the anisidine value. We state the Totox, which is 2 * PV + AV, on our certificates of analysis.
Free fatty acids
All natural fish oils contain some free fatty acids from the start. We have narrow limits for the free fatty acid content we allow in our crude oils, to ensure that we only use oil from fish that has been handled quickly after it emerges from the water. Any free fatty acids that may be present are basically removed through the processing, and the end products contain mainly triglycerides.
Fatty acid composition
We analyse the fatty acid content of our oils in our own labs and generally quote the result in the Certificates of Analyses as area-% or mg/g values.
We also evaluate the colour of the oil and other parameters depending on the product type. Environmental toxins and microbiological parameters are analysed in external, accredited laboratories.
Methodology and quality assurance
We measure peroxide value, anisidine value, free fatty acids, and fatty acid composition according to official methods by the American Oil Chemists Society (AOCS). We subject our laboratories to internal round robin tests to ensure that we get the same test results for different samples at each location, and take part in the international AOCS laboratory proficiency test programs. Our maximum limits for oxidation parameters and free fatty acids are generally stricter than official limits in the European or US Pharmacopeias.