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Meat Sci. 2010 Sep;86(1):119-28. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2010.04.033. Epub 2010 Apr 29.

Preservation technologies for fresh meat - a review.

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Nanjing Agricultural University, People's Republic of China.


Fresh meat is a highly perishable product due to its biological composition. Many interrelated factors influence the shelf life and freshness of meat such as holding temperature, atmospheric oxygen (O(2)), endogenous enzymes, moisture, light and most importantly, micro-organisms. With the increased demand for high quality, convenience, safety, fresh appearance and an extended shelf life in fresh meat products, alternative non-thermal preservation technologies such as high hydrostatic pressure, superchilling, natural biopreservatives and active packaging have been proposed and investigated. Whilst some of these technologies are efficient at inactivating the micro-organisms most commonly related to food-borne diseases, they are not effective against spores. To increase their efficacy against vegetative cells, a combination of several preservation technologies under the so-called hurdle concept has also been investigated. The objective of this review is to describe current methods and developing technologies for preserving fresh meat. The benefits of some new technologies and their industrial limitations is presented and discussed.

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