FLEISCHWIRTSCHAFT international 3/2017


Volume 32 _D42804 F

Journal for meat production,

processing and research




Technology for niche products


Starter cultures for

aChinese speciality


Meat quality of

different species


Hygienic status of

döner sandwiches


Meat Gaining

Fermented Products

Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017


The pressure comes up


Aconsolidation wave reaches the complete meat business

Recently,the air is becoming thin and thinner

in the field of meat processing. Insolvencies of

traditional companies, merger and take-overs

are an unmistakable sign of the dynamism that

is gaining in momentum.

The considerable rise in the international meat

prices since the beginning of the year has exacerbated

the tense economic situation on abroad

front, since raw material procurement in the

sausage sector accounts for about 70% of costs.

The industrial meat processors face the challenge

of passing the raw material costs, which are partly

drastically increased, to their customers –primarily

food retailers, whose scene is also in astate of

upheaval, as the latest Amazon /Whole Food

Markets deal proves. Butmany people find ahard

nut to crack when increasing prices are not

charged with additional product advantages.

Of course this situation also affects the suppliers

of the meat processors. Often it is not possible to

pass on urgently required price corrections to the

meat processing industry,since their calculations

are already more than scarce to meet the

purchase price targets of the food retailers.

And another old structural problem is unaffected.

Many excellent companies are on the

market with similar products. This exacerbates

the destructive competition in the meat industry,which

is characterized by afew large and

hundreds of smaller plants, especially because

the products are often interchangeable. The

market demands the best quality at the lowest

prices with high work and animal welfare standards.

This follows in adramatic descent of the

already small margins of the market actors.

Without asustainably higher added value, this

pressure in the sausage boiler cannot be mastered.

Foramedium-sized industry –which is

historically craft-oriented despite some great

processors –this can only mean developing

strategies for the future. The focus is certainly

on cost orientation, process optimization, marketing

activities and the successor question. But

it is also worthwhile to think about meaningful

associations of equal partners, in order to avoid

the swallowing reflex of the big ones or the need

to pull the line. In the ungrateful sandwich

position between the globally operating industry

conglomerates and the exorbitant food retailers,

the complete meat industry should help to

shape the inevitable structural change and not

endanger it. Creating the necessary efficiency in

production is associated with high investments

and forcing ever larger units. Many smaller

companies have fallen victim to this devil’s


No question,the demanded creativity of the

SMEs in the design of their business is just put

to atough test. Even if the ongoing change in

economic structures is the hallmark of amarket

economy,structural change is always accompanied

by individual fates. Declining profit margins

due to intensified price competition are a

huge obstacle to the important development.

Therefore all players in the value chain should

have to ensure that the money and goods flows

in the economic cycle "meat and sausage" correspond

to their real value, because value creation

cannot be endlessly increased. The meat sector –

which also includes food retailers –must be able

to balance returns, trust and credibility in a

sustainable way in order to have afuture.

Michael Weisenfels






Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017


22 25

Volume 32 _D42804 F



Meat chain


Technology for niche products


Starter cultures for

aChinese speciality


Small production units have to

follow the same hygienic standards

like equipment for large batches –

this is why the usage of stainless

steel for this machinery is amust.

Photo: Inotec


Meat quality of

different species


Hygienic status of

döner sandwiches


Meat Gaining

Fermented Products

3 Editorial

6 News

8 Business News

10 Foreign Markets

29 Industry News

43 Calendar

44 Advertisers, Credits, Subscriptions

49 Research News

22 Automating

New robot pulls ribs from pork belly

Research &Development

46 Irem Omurtag Korkmaz, Erkan Rayaman,

Pervin Rayaman and Ümran Soyoğul Gürer

Microbiological quality and portion analyses of döner sandwiches –

Investigations on beef and chicken döner sandwiches sold in Istanbul

50 Artur Rybarczyk, Aleksandra Łupkowska, Beata Hartuna

and Anna Sulerzyckat

Effect of pre-slaughter fasting and gender on pork quality

Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017



12 Characteristics

Meat obtained from various unconventional

species shows its quality

25 Production

Ever wider product portfolios call for

smaller batches that can be produced


30 Ripening

Starter cultures allow the opimization of

atraditional Chinese cured rabbit-meat





Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017



Antibiotic-free pork launched

HKScan Corporation has initiated

100% antibiotic-free pork production

in Finland. The first batch of

antibiotic-free meat will be available

on the market in July2017.

The development comes in

response to growing public concern

over antibiotic-resistant

bacteria and the reduced effectiveness

of antibiotics in the

treatment of diseases. The company

already uses asignificantly

lower volume of antibiotics in the


treatment of animals than in most

other European countries on

average. Instead, it safeguards

the health of its animals by investing

resources in animal type

spesific living environments, high

standards of hygiene and strict

biosecurity practices. In Finland,

onlyanegligible percentage of

HKScan pork is fed any medication

at any stage of its lifecycle. Due

to the strict period observed by

the company, all meat products

are 100% antibiotic-free by the

time they reach the consumer.

The most effective way to prevent

antibiotic resistance is to

limit the use of antibiotics strictly

to the treatment of diagnosed

disease, both in the case of humans

and production animals. The

contract producers do not use

antibiotics in order to prevent

diseases or promote growth. In

the rare event that antibiotics are

administered, this always takes

place under strict veterinary

supervision, and onlyinthe treatment

of adiagnosed disease.

HKScan is continuallyimproving

its Rypsiporsas rapeseed-fed

pork chain in Finland, now by

combining 100% antibiotic-free

production with the use of domesticallysourced

protein in

animal feed. This special pork is

raised on Finnish grain combined

with fullydomestic protein sources:

rapeseed, broad beans and



Plant-based meat available

Beyond Meat, aleader in plant-based protein, based in Los

Angeles, California, expanded U.S. distribution of its innovative

Beyond Burger into the meat section of Safeway grocery

stores. This was reported by Business Wire. The burger’s

expansion into Safeway marks asubstantial push by

Beyond Meat into the mainstream marketplace. The Beyond

Burger, which has seen sell-out demand since its launch

last May, has hit Safeway shelves in the chain’sNorthern

California division at Memorial Day weekend (end of May



Cattle ban could

stop beef exports

The Indian government’s ban on the

sale of cattle for slaughter is likely

to have dramatic impact on its

billion-dollar cattle export trade.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra

Modi’sgovernment has banned the

sale and purchase of cattle from

livestock markets, making it harder

for the meat industry to continue to

be abig player on the export stage.

Amajority of Indian beef comes from

its massive water buffalo herd

rather than cows, which are considered

sacred by the Hindu community

that makes up 80% of the country’s

1.3bn. population.

India is the second-largest volume-based

global beef exporter,

behind Brazil and slightlyahead of

Australia. Should the giant exit the

global export market, Indian beef

consuming nations would have to

source products from elsewhere,

shaking up global trade routes.



Mislabelled brands found

Kobe beef was among the items

most widelymislabelled.

Photo: Sebastian Karkus

Asurvey of products sold in six Asian

cities by Japan’sAgriculture,

Forestry and Fisheries Ministry found

927 items confirmed as being falsely

labelled as being Japanese. These

ranged from local Thai melons being

sold as “Yubari Japnese melons” to

premium brands such as Tajima beef

and mass-market staples including

Shinshu miso.

The research covered goods in

some 30 supermarkets in each of the

six cities. In Shanghai, Wagyu beef

was found to be manufactured in

Australia under aprestigious Japanese

brand name, while products

wronglypurporting to be made by the

Japanese Edo brand were widely

available. The latest survey in an

annual series started in 2009 also

investigated online shopping channels,

on which 166food items were

found to be used without authorisation.

Among these, the words “Kobe”

and “Tajima” were used wronglyfor

92 beef products. In amove to protect

Japanese products from being

mislabelled overseas, the ministry

has embarked on ageographical

indication system, whereby the

names of items produced in specific

regions can be registered as intellectual

property.Sofar, 28 items,

including Kobe beef and Yubari

melon, have been registered.



HPAI outbreaks

reported in Egypt

In avian influenzadevelopments,

Egypt reported six more highlypathogenic

H5N8 outbreaks, mostly

involving backyard poultry, according

to notifications from the World

Organization for Animal Health (OIE).

Egypt's outbreaks began between

28 February and 16 April, spanning

six different governorates. They

include Kafr El Sheikh, Al Qahirah,

Gharbia, and Qalyubia in the north;

Minya in north central Egypt; and

New Valley in the southwest. Five of

the events involved backyard birds,

and the one in New Valley governorate

occurred at afarm.

Taken together, the virus killed

120of1,344susceptible birds. The

remaining ones were culled to control

the spread of the virus. Also, as

part of the outbreak response health

officials vaccinated about 543,000

poultry in Gharbia, Minya, Qalyubia,

and Kafr El Sheikh.


Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017



Strong industry performance with ashake-up in global trade


Rabobank publishes Global Poultry QuarterlyQ2

2017. Photo: Jürgen Oberguggenberger /


Global poultry is currentlyperforming well, with

profitability in most regions in the world, despite

the ongoing global pressure of avian

influenza(AI), especiallyinAsia, according to

Rabobank’sGlobal Poultry Quarterlyfor Q2 2017.

The big exception remains China, where the

negative impact of human AI cases has kept

prices down.

“Global poultry trade has reached recordhigh

levels, but trade streams have shifted,”

according to RaboResearch Senior Animal

Protein Analyst Jan-Dirk Mulder.“The US and, to

alesser extent, Thailand have been the winners

in this trade shake-up, due to AI-related

restrictions and the impacts of the ‘meat

scandal’ in Brazil.”

Human AI cases in China are still spreading

and impacting the market, although prices

have recentlyrecovered somewhat. Aconcern

is the further spread of the virus in

China, with recent movements to northern

regions. Chinese local authorities have

closed many live bird markets, and this has

had aparticularlybig impact on the yellowbird

market. Imports are relativelyunaffected,

as they serve the processed meat market.

The Brazilian ‘meat scandal’ is having a

significant impact on global trade. Exports from

Brazil have been dropping since March (April:

-23%), and this has created an additional shift

in global trade streams, on top of the AI-related

impact. The US has been the winner, with

European exporters also taking some of the

Middle East trade.

Most global markets are performing well,

with acombination of strong demand, restricted

supply, and ongoing low feed costs.

Industries in Mexico, India, Thailand, and Japan

are performing particularlywell, while South

Africa and the EU are on the road to recovery.

Global meat trade is highlyvolatile, but

reached arecord-high Q1 level of 3mill. t. Aside

from the changes in raw trade driven by AI,

along with the meat scandal, apotentially

bigbut still uncertain –development could be

the entry of Chinese cooked chicken into the

US market.



First U.S. stores opened in June

Lidl US revealed that its first U.S. stores would open in June. This was

reported by Supermarket News.

Lidl, adivision of German retailer Schwarz Group with U.S. headquarters

in Arlington, Va., also provided locations of the 20 stores it said it would

open this summer but did not reveal how many of those would open their

doors in June.

The entry promises additional points of pressure to aU.S. grocery

market already struggling with overcapacity, slowing sales affected by

deflation and price competitiveness threatening profits. Anticipation of

its arrival has been adriving factor in any number of events in recent

years, from the Ahold-Delhaize merger, to Walmart’s price and service

investments, to stepped-up renovations and expansion of its German

counterpart Aldi.


Organic food

US sales jump more than 8%

Organic food sales in the United States increased by 8.4% in 2016 to reach

$43 bn., marking the first time sales surpassed $40 bn., according to the

Organic Trade Association’sindustry survey released in May.

The 8.4% jump compared to an increase of 0.6% in overall US food market

sales. Overall US organic sales were about $47 bn. in 2016.Sales of organic

non-food products increased 8.8% to $3.9 bn. Organic food accounted for

5.3% of total US food sales, organic meat and poultry rose more than 17%in

2016 to $991mill.



Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017

Business News


Beef units

to be sold

The world's largest meat processor,

JBS SA, has announced to sell its

Argentine operations to asmaller

rival, retreating from atop beefproducing

nation that was once a

springboard for an aggressive international

expansion. The $300 mill.

transaction, expected to close in

July, also involves the sale of JBS

plants in Paraguay and Uruguay to


The agreement with buyer Minerva

SA is the first by embattled JBS since

its founders admitted to paying

bribes to Brazilian politicians in

exchange for favors in ascandal that

threatens to topple President Michel

Temer.The buyer, also based in

Brazil, will pay $280 mill. in cash at

the closing of the transaction, and

the balance will be paid after the

conclusion of due diligence. JBS,

which will use proceeds from the

transaction to cut debt, experienced

difficult operating conditions in

Argentina after beginning its international

expansion there by acquiring

domestic rival Swift in 2005. Weakness

at JBS' Mercosur division,

comprising Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay

and Paraguay, contributed to a14.3%

drop in the company's net revenue in

the first quarter.Even before that,

JBS closed several beef processing

plants in Argentina as its business

came under pressure from export

quotas imposed by then-President

Cristina Fernandez. Of the five plants

acquired from JBS in Argentina, four

are closed and will remain so until

market conditions improve there.


Tönnies /Idavang

EU meat giants to invest in Russia

Global meat players including Germany’sTönnies and Denmark’sIdavang

are planning to invest heavilyinmajor Russian projects.

Government officials claim the scale of Russia’s144 mill. population

could be overcoming reluctance from overseas companies to develop

operations in Russia. Tönnies plans to invest up to $95 mill., building

the first stage of aslaughterhouse complex in the Belgorod region

(Oblast) in southern Russia. According to the company, the new slaughterhouse

will have the capacity to process up to 728,000 head of pigs a

year, making it one of the largest abattoirs in Russia. Further investment

is planned so that, by 2020, the plant’s capacity would reach 1.04

mill. head per year, and the company has longer term plans to increase

this to 2.08 mill. head. The company has already purchased aplot of 30

ha in the Alekseevsky district of Belgorod. Up to 70% of the plant’s

future production will be sold in Russia.



The Teeuwissen Group and the Van

Hessen Group have successfully

closed the transaction to start the

integration of their companies,

following the approval by the

merger control authorities.

Hormel Foods

Construction of

new plant

Jennie-O Turkey Store began construction

on anew state-of-the-art

processing plant in Melrose, Minn.

More than $137 mill. will be invested

in the building and state-ofthe-art

processing equipment that

will increase the production capabilities

and plant efficiency.The

current plant will remain in operation

during the construction

process. Once the new plant is

finished in early2019,the existing

plant will be partiallytorn down and

the remainder will be used for

further value-added products.


Teeuwissen /Van Hessen

Closing of the transaction has been completed

The Saria Group is headquartered in Selm, Germany. Photo: VanHessen Group

The new Saria division, which

will operate under the VanHessen

name, will bundle the complementary

activities of both companies in

the natural casings business

creating afullyintegrated worldwide

value chain. Harald van Boxtel,

CEO of the Teeuwissen Group

and Elliot Simon, so far CEO of the

VanHessen Group, will form the

Management Team of the new Van

Hessen. Harald van Boxtel will take

the position of CEO, Chief Executive

Officer and Elliot Simon of CCO,

Chief Commercial Officer.The head

office of the new division will be in

Nieuwerkerk aan den IJssel (the



Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017


Business News

Smithfield Foods

Pini Group deal finalized

Smithfield Foods and Pini Group

have announced the completion of

Smithfield’sacquisition of the

packaged meats company in


Animex Foods, part of Smithfield

Poland and one of the largest food

producers in the country, will operate

the Pini Group companies.

Included in the deal are Pini Polska,

ameat processing and packaging

plant, Hamburger Pini, acase-ready

meat plant, and Royal Chicken, an

investment project currentlyin


The acquisition solidifies Smithfield

Poland’sposition as the

largest employer in the Polish food

industry with nearly9,240 people,

240 of which are former Pini employees.

The closing followed approval

from the Office of Competition and

Consumer Protection (UOKiK) in

Poland and completion of due

diligence. Terms of the deal were

not disclosed.

The Pini Group is an agglomerate

of 7company across Europe with

facility in Italy,Hungary and Poland.

In ItalyPini owns tthree plants for

processing and two slaughterhouses.

Hungary is home of the first

slaughterhouse of the group.




acquisition completed

Tyson Foods Inc. announced the

completion of the company’sacquisition

of AdvancePierre Foods

Holdings Inc. Meanwhile, shareholders

contesting the merger are

proceeding with legal actions.

Tyson Foods completed atender

offer to buy all the outstanding

shares of AdvancePierre common

stock for $40.25 per share in cash,

without interest. The total value of

the transaction was approximately

$4.2 bn.

AdvancePierre is now awholly

owned subsidiary of Tyson Foods,

and its shares will cease to be

traded on the New York Stock Exchange.

Tyson Foods President and

CEO TomHayes said that integration

teams have been formed and that

Tyson will remain focused on maintaining

high-quality customer

service during the transition.

But some investors have questioned

the transaction and have

turned to the courts to get access

to information these investors say

they need. Richard Karpf, an AdvancePierre

shareholder, filed alawsuit

in Delaware Court of Chancery

seeking access to records and

alleging that top executives at the

company were conflicted and acted

in their own self-interest.

In May, Stephen Bushansky filed a

lawsuit with the US District Court for

the Southern District of Ohio seeking

to block the acquisition. The

complaint stated that the AdvancePierre

board and the company’s

executive officers are conflicted

because they will have secured

unique benefits for themselves from

the Proposed Transaction not available

to Plaintiff and the public

stockholders of AdvancePierre.




Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017

Foreign Markets


Pork industry still successful –2015’s good figures continued 2016

Spain and Germany are the largest

pigmeat producers in the European

Union. Companies from both countries

encounter each other on the

European Market and in third country

markets. As regards growth


characteristics, production and

economic frameworks, developments

in the two countries diverge


Latest figures reported by the

German Raiffeisen Association

(DRV) Livestock and Meat Business

Committee showed, that the

EU still is the world’ssecond

largest pigmeat producer after

China, with 23.5 mill. tin2016.

The EU Commission forecasts a

slight decrease by 0.4% to 23.4

mill. tfor the year 2017.

Predominance among the

largest European pigmeat producers

is shared. In 2016 Germany

accounted for ashare of 24% of

EU pigmeat production (5.57 mill.

t), followed by Spain with 17.5%

(4.06 mill. t). However, the reverse

is true for live animal stocks. Here

for the first time in 2015 Spanish

farmers kept 2.5% more pigs than

their German colleagues. This

opposite trend with growth in

Southern Europe and areduction in

Germany continued 2016.

The statements by Spanish

market experts, who expected an

increase in the number of sows,

were confimed by the December

census. In December 2016 1.67

mill. sows were kept in Spain,

which is an increase of 5.7%

compared to the May census. The

increase follows the completion

of housing installations with

capacities of 2000 to 4000 places.


The increase in the number of

pigs slaughtered in Spain in the

years 2014 and 2015 was more than

6% ayear by comparison with the

year before. This trend slowed a

little for the first time in 2016,but

despite this Spain reports an

increase of 3.95% in the number of

slaughtering operations in 2016,

while Germany could onlyreport a

slight decrease of 0.2%. Germany

recorded aslight increase in live

imports in 2016.Spain, on the other

hand, reduced the imports of

piglets from 2015 to 2016 by

44.76%. Overall, alittle more than

0.5 mill. piglets were procured

mainlyfrom the Netherlands. Spain

balances the increases in production

primarilybyincreases in exports

to third countries. In 2016 the

export volume was increased again

to 2.04 mill. t, which is an increase

of 16.07% compared to 2015.This

corresponds to an export share of

over 50% of total production –

explaining the high degree of

self-sufficiency, which has been

161.5% in 2015 and which should

have increased again in 2016.


Tab.: Comparison of the most important market figures for Germany/Spain in relation to production in

the EU



2014 2015 2016 2014 2015 2016

Pig stocks in mill. head 28,3 27,65 27,37 26,56 28,36 29,23 *

Share in %ofEUtotal 19,1 18,6 18,5 17,91 19 19,8

Pig slaughtering in mill. head 58,7 59,4 59,3 43,48 46,3 47,7

Share in %ofEUtotal 23,61 23,2 23,01 17,48 18,14 18,54

Pigmeat production in mill. t 5,51 5,56 5,57 3,62 3,85 4,05 *

Share in %ofEUtotal 24,8 24,2 24 16,3 16,9 17,5

Per capita consumption in kg 38,2 37,5 35,8 48,8 51,5 n.d.

Self-sufficiency rate in % 117,4 120,1 120,8 157,6 161,5 n.d.

*preliminary result; n.d.= no data

Source: DRV FLEISCHWIRTSCHAFT international 3_2017


Global beef markets offer many of issues among major beef exporters

USDA-FAS (Foreign Agricultural

Service) estimates the top five beef

exporting countries in 2017,inorder,

as India, Brazil, Australia, the U.S.

and New Zealand.

These five countries were projected

to export atotal of 6.83 mill. t

of beef, about 71% of the total

among major world beef exporters.

India is currentlyprojected to be

the top beef exporting country with

a2017forecast total of 1.85 mill. tof

water buffalo exports. Carabeef

exports from India have grown

sharplyinthe past eight years.

However, the beef industry in India

is mostlyoperated by Muslim companies

which are increasinglyin

conflict with the Hindu dominated

The global beef markets offer a

wide range of issues.

Photo: uschi dreiucker /pixelio.de

federal government and also in

some Indian states. Brazil, the

number two beef exporting country,

is projected to export 1.80 mill. tin

2017.However, Brazil has been

rocked recentlybyseveral scandals.

It is not clear how much impact

these scandals might have on total

beef exports from Brazil in 2017 but

any impact will likelybenegative.

Australia has dropped to third

place among beef exporting countries

with aprojected 2017 export

total of 1.4mill. t. The country is

beginning to recover from aserious

drought that forced cattle herd

liquidation and temporarilyswelled

beef production and exports in 2014

and 2015.Herd rebuilding just

started but it will take some time.

Australia is seeing reduced beef

exports to all its major markets

including Japan, the US, South Korea

and China.

The US is the fourth largest beef

exporting country with a2017 forecast

total of 1.236 mill. t. The country

is in aunique temporary position to

increase global market share in

major export markets given the

disruptions and uncertainty among

other major beef exporters. The long

anticipated opening of China will

provide an opportunity for beef

exports to grow significantlyover

time. However, nervousness continues

with the possibility of disrupting

NAFTAtrade on the North American




Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017


Composition of unconventional meats

Meat obtained from various unconventional species shows its quality

In recent years more and more

unusual meat varieties have been

introduced to the market. This

trend is likely to intensify in the

future, as purchasing raw materials

becomes more global. Acloser look

at the composition gives an idea of

the quality of these meat varieties.

By Akhilesh K. Verma,

Pramila Umaraw,A.Prajapati,

Pavan Kumar,Devendra Kumar

and Nitin Mehta

Anoverview of the characteristic

composition of several meat

varieties of different mammals are

given in Tables 1and 2.

Deer meat

Meat from deer has some special quality characte ristics that make it very

attractive to consumers. Photo: Günter Havlena /pixelio.de

Venison is the meat obtained from

deer and its family.Venison (deer

meat) has some special quality

characteristics that make it more

attractive to consumers such as its

tenderness, low fat content, afavorable

fatty acid profile and higher

minerals content. All these quality

characteristics of venison fulfill the

demands of consumers better than

the other meat (HOFFMAN and

WIKLUND,2006). However,most

important things to ensure the

positive image of deer meat as a

“natural”quality is not lost when

production systems meet the consumer’demands.

All the basic

principles of animal processing

such as effects of gender,age, region

and practices like nutrition, preslaughter

handling, transport,

lairage, stunning, electrical stimulation,

slaughtering methods that

effect the meat quality and composition

that are applicable to more

traditional red meat species are also

applicable to deer (HOFFMAN and

WIKLUND,2006). However,various

differences observed among the

beef, carabeef, pork, mutton, chevon

and venison in water-holding capacity,tenderness,


flavor,mussel fiber diameter and

eating quality have suggested that

meat products manufactures should

use species-specific modification in

the existing process and technology

for optimizing the quality characteristics

of these meats products


WIKLUND et al. (2010)evaluated

the effects of season on quality

attributes of venison. M. longissimus

dorsi samples were selected for

examination of calpain on the

slaughter line and other muscles

were collected at one day postslaughter.Seasonal

differences were

confirmed in the pH-value of venison.

Highly significant positive

regressions were observed for shear

force and color,wherever higher

pH-values were connected with

tougher meat and longer color

keeping times. The authors reported

an increasing trend of fluid loss

during entire storage. They estimated

as quantity of purge over

14 weeks of storage subtracted with

the amount of drip loss at day 1

post-slaughter averaging 2.5%

among all the groups of muscles.

The relative efficacy of the calpastatin-bound

calpain, µ-calpain and

m-calpain all showed aseasonal

variation in pattern although there

was no confirmation that this affected

the tenderness of the mussel


VOLPELLI et al. (2002) studied

32 male deer,aged between 18–30

month, which were slaughtered

after afour month feeding trial on

pasture alone or with daily supplement

of 500 g(dry matter) concentrate

per head. They reported that

neither diet nor age of the deer

produced statistically significant

effects on the pH-value and color of

M. longissimus thoracis et lumborum

(LM) and M. semi-membranosus

(SM). The textural properties of

meat (Warner-Bratzler Shear Force

and compression), water loss and

collagen content were unchanged by

diet, while the age affects the meat

quality parameters. They reported

that elder deers have higher Warner-

Bratzler peak force values (4.15 and

4.88 kg) than the younger ones and

lower collagen solubility (34.61and

22.58%). LM and M. semi-tendinosus

(ST) of the concentrate supplemented

deer had ahigher amount of

fat (pasture and concentrate feeding:

0.56 and 0.72% in LM; 0.55 and

0.78% in ST) respectively and had a

lower content of poly-unsaturation

fatty acids (PUFA), particularly n-3

PUFA, and ahigher n-6/n-3 ratio

(3.30 and 4.76 in LM; 3.39 and 4.63

in ST). Thirty-month-olds’ LM and

ST contained higher fat than 18-

month-olds’ and showed alower

content of PUFA, both in the n-6

and n-3 portion.

POLAK et al. (2008) studied the

effects of gender (male and female)

and age on intramuscular fat levels,

cholesterol content, and fatty acid

profile were in M. semi-tendinosus

(ST) and M. triceps brachii (TB)

muscles of feral red deer (Cervus

elaphus). In general, all attributes

measured were influenced by type of

muscle and treatment group. In ST,

the intra muscular fat amounts were

highest for hinds. In TB, the cholesterol

content was lower for stags as

compared to hinds and calves. The

saturated fatty acids content was

recorded maximum for stags, similarly

mono-unsaturated fatty acids

for hinds. The polyunsaturated fatty

acids (PUFAs) were measured

maximum for calves and minimum

for hinds. The n3 PUFAs were the

minimum for hinds. In both type of

muscles, the calves have the maximum

n6 PUFAs in comparison to

the stags and hinds. However,STof

the hinds contained (1.44%) of the

conjugated linoleic acid isomer


Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017



Nutritional composition

Tab. 1: Nutritional composition of various unconventional meats in comparison to cattle

Parameters Deer Horse Camel Donkey Goat Buffalo Cattle

pH 5.48 5.92 5.84 – 5.88 5.57 5.97

Moisture 76.27 76.49 71.00 73.7 76.5 74.99 71.50

Protein 21.56 22.31 20.90 22.8 20.80 21.20 21.50

Fat 0.56 2.22 7.00 2.02 1.60 2.67 5.50

Ash 1.12 1.25 1.10 1.01 0.87 0.98 0.90

Carbohydrates – – – 0.46 – – –

Moisture-protein 3.53 3.42 3.39 3.23 3.67 3.53 3.32



(kcal/100 g)

149.00 – – 116.00 546.00 173.00 498.00

Sources: VOLPELLI et al. (2003); POLIDORI et al. (2008) and miscellaneous

Source: VERMA et al. FLEISCHWIRTSCHAFT international 3_2017

18:2 cis-9, trans-11,whereas in TB of

hinds and calves the amount of

conjugated linoleic acid was higher

as compared to the stags. The researchers

summarized that gender

and age of red deer persuade the

intramuscular fat content, the

cholesterol content, and the fatty

acid profile of the meat.

JOSEPH et al. (2012)estimated the

primary structure of deer myoglobin

(Mb). White-tailed deer Mb was

obtained from heart muscles employing

ammonium sulfate precipitation

and gel-filtration chromatography

technique. The sequence of

the amino acids in the Mb was

determined by Edman degradation.

Sequence analyses of unbroken Mb

as well as tryptic- and cyanogen

bromide-peptides yielded the comprehensive

primary structure of deer

Mb, which showed homologous

with red deer Mb. White-tailed deer

Mb contain 153amino acid chain

residues and illustrate more than a

96% sequence of amino acid similarity

with myoglobins from meat

producing amimals, such as cattle,

buffalo, sheep and goat. Comparable

to sheep and goat myoglobins,

white-tailed deer Mb contains twelve

histidine residues. JOSEPH et al.

(2012)also reported that proximal

(location 93) and distal (location 64)

histidine residues responsible for

maintaining the stability of heme

are conserved in white-tailed deer


QUARESMA et al. (2012)reported

that the meat lipid fraction obtained

from M. psoas major (ten males and

ten females adults) of feral Iberian

red deer (Cervus elaphus hispanicus)

was characterized by the quantification

of cholesterol, vitamin-E and fat

acid profiles including the comprehensive

trans octadecenoate and

conjugated linoleic acid (CLA)

isomeric profile. The total fat content

showed lean meat (0.99 gfat per



Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017


Composition of unconventional meats

Fatty acid profiles

Tab. 2: Fatty acid profiles (%) of various unconventional meats in comparison to cattle

Parameters Deer Horse Camel Donkey Goat Buffalo Cattle

SAF 22.24 40.20 51.26 41.08 43.88 0.460 40.90

MUFA 37.51 18.10 37.24 33.76 42.30 0.420 40.10

PUFA 40.26 41.50 11.50 25.16 16.47 0.270 10.00

PUFA:SAF (ratio) 1.81 1.00 0.22 0.61 0.37 0.58 0.24

(n-6):(n-3) (ratio) 2.20 1.80 3.36 5.02 – 1.62 1.75

Cholesterol (mg per

100 gmeat sample)

51.38 62.00 50.00 68.70 71.20 46.00 59.00

Sources: HOFFMAN and FERREIRA (2004); SMIT (2004); LORENZO et al. (2013); POLIDORI et al. (2009); POLIDORI et al. (2015); PARK and WASHINGTON (1993) and


Soruce: VERMA et al. FLEISCHWIRTSCHAFT international 3_2017

100gof meat), with acholesterol

content of 55.6 mg per 100gof

muscle. The fatty acid profile revealed

high poly-unsaturated fatty

acid levels for ruminant meat (30.2 g

per 100gFA). The 18:2 cis-9,

trans-11 content was quite low

(0.26% of total FA) in comparison to

other non-ruminant meats.

Horse meat

Horse meat is also known as Chevaline

and characterized by its inherent

dark color,repulsive odor with

absence of large fatty adipose tissues

and peculiar yellow fat (PRICE and

SCHWEIGERT,1994). However,it

presents subcutaneous fat with low

levels of adiposity and the fat depots

around the kidney and the flank

region are comparatively lean.

Horse meat has adeep dark color

that transforms to brown or black

with abluish tinge on exposure to

air.However,large variabilities were

observed among European equine

meat obtained from the various

horse origins (place), breed and

husbandry system (feeding etc.). It

is complex to compare results reported

by various researches, as

foals are of varied ages and breeds.

Carcass parameters like meat cut or

muscle composition depend on the

cutting and dissection technique

and process.

This superior quality of horse

meat might play amajor role in this

context as ared meat substitute to

beef and carabeef (buffalo). It is also

claimed as “dietetic”meat (BADIANI

et al., 1997; LORENZO et al., 2010)but

only if the productive chain is under

astrict control to assurance traceability.DEL

BO et al. (2013)also

reported that regular consumption

of horse meat may contribute to

reduced total and low density lipid

cholesterol intakes and improve the

omega-3 index, docosahexaeneoic

acid (C22:3n-6) and iron status.

In many countries the production

of horse meat is not consistent due

to various reasons: ageneral low

consumption per capita per year is

limited to the customary horse meat

consuming-countries such as Spain,

Italy,France and Belgium. Ahuge

number of horses is generally imported

from East European countries

not for meat production purposes

but is slaughtered frequently

unlawfully.The lack of particular

production systems because of the

use of horses that come from

drought races or saddle horses, often

at the end of their performance (old

age) or that are slaughtered for poor

health reasons (BADIANI and MAN-

FREDINI,1994;LANZA et al. 2009;

TATEO et al. 2008) create critical

constrains on animal traceability.

Also regularly unlawful market

practices and trading is seen in this


BELAUNZARAN et al. (2015)reported

that eating of horse meat is

presently not popular in most of the

nations, but due to its availability

and recognized nutritional quality

characteristics consumption is

gradually increasing in various

western European countries based

on claims that it could be substitute

of the red meat (ruminants). In

addition, the other advantage of

production of horse meat is because

of its lower methane production in

comparison to other ruminant

animals and improved uptake

mainly of n-3 polyunsaturated fatty

acids (PUFAs), which is due to its

unique digestive system. Horse

meat shows an unique fatty acid

profile with high levels of the nutritionally

desirable PUFAs in both the

adipose as well as tissue fat. Due to

the large body size and unique

digestive system horse meat can be

considered as asubstitute of red

meat such as beef and carabeef, with

various advantages such as the

maintenance of less preferential

mountain grazing areas and its

capacity to transmit PUFA from

feed to mussel meat.

Donkey meat

Donkey is an essential domestic

animal in various nation such as in

North Africa and the Middle East

(SMITH and PEARSON,2005), because

donkey may survive, grow,

reproduce and produce meat and

milk in various adverse climatic

conditions. At present the donkey

can comprise an essential source of

meat in particularly in arid and

semi-arid zones, however in the past

the potential of donkey proliferation

for meat production has received

very less attention. In the majority of

the nations where donkeys are

utilized for work purpose or milk

production, they are slaughtered

after passing the productive life

(spent animal). This factor possibly

accounts for the general view that

donkey meat is unacceptably due to

the presence of more collagen cross

Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017



linking, and is generally intended to

be transformed into salami or other

salted meat-based products which is

quite resemble with Charqui (PINTO

et. al., 2002) or Tasajo (CHENOLL et

al., 2007).

Donkey meat is recently accepted

as agood nutritive food for human

utilization due to the presence of

good quality proteins, vitamins and

minerals (LORENZO et al., 2014).

Nowadays consumers demand

leaner meat, with lesser fat content

and aconsistent quality (FRANCO et

al., 2011), and thus donkey meat is

principally obtained from young

animals than from spent animals


to avoid unacceptable quality characteristics

such as the lack of tenderness.

However,many parameters

such as Donkey breed, type of sex,

weight of animal, age and their

interactions have been revealed to

influence carcass characteristics and

meat quality,aswell as fat covering/

marbling and fatty acid profile

(JUÁREZ et al., 2009).

POLIDORI et al. (2008) studied

some important physico-chemical

and mineral profiles on 15 entire

donkey males. They reported the

carcass quality and nutritional

characteristics of meat recovered

from these animals slaughtered at

15 months of age having abody

weight of 181 kg. The study showed

that the nutritional quality of donkey

meat had alow fat content (2.02%),

22.8% protein content, and acholesterol

content of 68.7 mg per 100g.

Similarly the glycogen content in the

donkey meat was 0.45 gper 100g

within 12 hafter slaughtering.

Among the minerals the potassium

content was highest (343 mg per

100g), followed by phosphorus

(212 mg per 100g), sodium (52 mg

per 100g)and magnesium (24 mg

per 100g). Thus donkey meat recovered

from young animals can be

considered agood option to other

red meats and not only for the

preparation of salami, or other

fermented meat products.

POLIDORI et al. (2009) also examined

the rheological and chemical

characteristics of meat harvested

from twelve Martina Franca donkey

males, slaughtered at 14 months of

age and alive weight of 169kg. Meat

samples were obtained after four

days post mortem from M. longissimus

thoracis et lumborum and biceps

femoris. The colorimetric indices

were observed to determine L*

(lightness), a*(redness), b*(yellowness)

and chroma value. The lightness

value was significantly lighter



Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017


Composition of unconventional meats

Camel is the most appropriate source of protein from animal origin in provinces

with harsh climatic conditions.

Photo: nike159/pixabay

tions in myofibrillar proteins,

whereas background toughness is

attributable due to connective tissues.

KEMP et al. (2010)reported that

various factors influence the tenderness

of meat such as the post mortem

proteolysis, pH of meat, intramuscular

fat, intramuscular connective

tissue and the contractile state of the

muscle. These factors also contribute

to the differences between

different muscles within the same


Meat obtained from camel is a

good source of various nutrients,

reported by various workers such as

FARAH and FISCHER (2004) and

KADIM et al. (2008) to comprise

76-78% moisture, 19%protein,

2.9-3% fat, and 1.2% ash. The latter

researches also accounted that

camels can produce carcass weights

ranging from 125–400 kg having

dressing percentages ranging from

55–70%. However the nutrient

content of camel meat varies and is

influenced by several factors such as

age, sex, weight and cut. Meat obtained

from camel is characteristically

lean, with alesser fat content

than to other meat rearing animals

such as cattle and sheep. Camel

meat also contains alower cholesterol

content and comparatively

higher polyunsaturated fatty acids.

These quality characteristics of

camel meat, coupled with the boost

in higher demand for healthy protein

sources, have led to enhance in

the consumption of camel based

meat products. Even though, the

quality characteristics of camel meat

and its correlation to the structural

characteristics of camel muscle or

meat has established diminutive


AL-OWAIMER et al. (2014)reported

that Saudi Arabian camels of four

different breeds (six animals per

breed) were used to assesses quality

characteristics of camel meat. The

chemical composition, muscle fiber

cross sectional area, amount of

collagen, muscle metabolism, cooking

loss, change in pH at 24 h post

mortem,color characteristics and

shear force values of LT did not

differ significantly among the

breeds. Slightly higher pH values

and shorter sarcomeres length,

decrease in overall tenderness value,

with adifference between myofibril

fragmentation index significantly

and sarcomere length were significantly

among breeds. Adirect correlation

was recorded between the

activities of the mitochondrial enzymes,

between the glycolytic activities

(PFK and LDH) and between

Myosin heavy chain IIa and LDH

activity.The intramuscular fat percentage

was directly connected with

the meat color values and muscle

oxidative metabolism, while the

shear force values had aslight

positive correlation with the quantity

of the collagen and muscle glycolytic

metabolism and anegative correlation

with the muscle oxidative

metabolism and muscle fiber area.

KADIM et al. (2013)also evaluated

and characterized the chemical

composition, quality and histological

characters of six muscles obtained

from ten camel carcasses.

There were considerable differences

observed in the moisture percent, fat

percent, protein percent, mineral

content, saturated and unsaturated

fatty acid composition among muscles.

They observed that the LT had

the maximum cooking loss (33.5%)

and TB the minimum cooking loss

(29.2%). The authors also found that

the shear force value of ST,SMand

BF were significantly higher than IS,

TB and LT.The LT had considerably

higher instrumental color profile

values for L*, a*, b*ascompared to

ST.The SM had the lowest myofibrilar

index (65.3), while IS had the

highest value myofibrilar index

(75.8). However the ST considerably

had the maximum and minimum

proportions of Type Iand Type IIA

muscle fibers, respectively as compared

to other muscles studied. The

author stated that composition,

quality,and histochemical characteristics

varied among various camel

muscles. The information of this

variation allows for improved promotion

and processing of camel

meat and meat products.

KADIM et al. (2008) stated that

camel meat is agood source of meat

particularly in regions where the

environmental condition negatively

affects the performance of other

meat animals. This is due to the

exceptional physiological characteristics,

including tolerance to high

temperatures, solar radiation, water

insufficiency,irregular topography

and meager vegetation. The average

birth weight of camel calf is about

35 kg; however,itdiffers widely

between regions, breeds and within

the same breed. The meat producing

capacity of camels is restricted due

to its modest growth rates (500 gper

day). Though, camels are mostly

reared under conventional extensive

environmental conditions on poor

nutrition and are generally slaughtered

at older ages after the pass of

productive life, racing, use in transport

or milk production. Camels

attain live body weights of approximately

650 kg at 7–8 years of age,

and recovered carcass weights

ranging from 125–400 kg with a

dressing percentage amount from

55–70%. Camel carcasses constitute

about 57% muscle, 26% bone and

17%fat with fore halves (cranial to

rib 13)considerably heavier as

compared to the hind halves. Lean

meat obtained from camel contains

about 78% moisture, 19%protein,

3% fat, and 1.2% ash with alittle

quantity of intramuscular fat, which

provides it to be ahealthy meat for

human consumption. They also

reported that the color of camel

meat varied from raspberry red to

dark brown and the color of fat is

white. Camel meat is almost comparable

in taste and texture to beef.

However the amino acid content

and mineral content of camel meat

are often more as compared to the

beef, possibly due to alesser intramuscular

fat content. The authors

also reported that recently camel

meat has been utilized for the preparation

of various processed meat

products such as burgers, patties

and sausages to add value.

Rabbit meat

Rabbit meat is usually consumed in

various European countries such as

Italy,Czech Republic, Spain, Belgium,

Luxembourg, Portugal, and

France and some North African

nations like Egypt and Algeria. In

the majority of these countries

rabbit meat harvesting plays asignificant

role in the national financial


Various studied reported that

rabbit meat has very good nutritive

values and dietetic characteristics

(COMBES et al., 2005; HERNÀNDEZ

and GONDRET,2006). The proximate

composition of rabbit meat exhibits

that it is protein rich (approximately

22%). Beside ahigh protein percentage,

rabbit meat also includes agood

quantity of essential aminoacid

levels (EAA). The lean portion of

rabbit meat (moisture and protein

contents) is comparatively constant

(73.0 gwater and 21.5gprotein per

100gmeat) with adeclining tendency

from the middle portion (loin)

to the hind portion and then to the

fore portion of the carcass. However,

the mineral percentage is also remaining

constant at approximately

1.2–1.3gper 100gmeat. The most

lean cut of meat obtained from the

rabbit carcass is the loin, with a

normal fat percentage of 1.8gper

100gmeat, while the highest fat

content present is in the fore leg,

with anormal fat percentage of 8.8 g

per 100g.The most quantitatively

important cut obtained from the

rabbit carcass is the hindleg, and its

fat percentage is relatively low

(normal 3.4 gper 100g)compared to

the other sources of meat. Therefore

the overall amount of the fat percentage

depends significantly on the

part considered, and also on rearing

factors and particularly feeding

(DALLE ZOTTE,2002). Rabbit meat

provides reasonably high energy

values; it depends principally on its

high protein content, which accounts

for 80% of the energy value.

Rabbit meat is classified in white

meat. Thus similar to other white



Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017


Composition of unconventional meats

Ratite meat like meat from emu has unique properties in the fields of lipids.

Photo: S. Thomas /pixelio.de

meats, rabbit meat encloses low

levels of iron (1.3and 1.1mgper

100gforthe hindleg muscle and

loin muscle, respectively (PARIGI

BINI et al.,1992). LOMBARDI et al.

(2005) reported the presence of zinc

is approximately 0.55 mg per 100g

in the entire carcass. HERMIDA et al.

(2006) documented that 1.1 mg per

100gzinc is in the hindleg muscle.

BOVERA et al. (2005) stated that the

iron content in meat was found to be

higher (2.15 mg per 100g)innative

breeds of rabbits reared extensively.

Therefore, meat obtained from

rabbit might more contribute to

fulfill iron requirements. Rabbit

meat has alow content of sodium,

which was was confirmed by various

researchers. PARIGI BINI et al. (1992)

reported that the sodium content of

rabbit meat is 37 mg per 100gfor

loin and 49.5 mg per 100gfor hindleg

meat (CHIERICATO et al., 1996;

HERMIDA et al., 2006). This low

sodium content is making it chiefly

more suitable in hypertension diets.

The meat is arich source of phosphorus

and it has second most

abundant minerals. HERMIDA et al.

(2006) reported that rabbit meat has

ahigh phosphorus content of

222 mg per 100gfor the hind leg

muscle. Similarly chicken, pork and

chevon have lower phosphorus

concentration than rabbit meat:

200 mg per 100g,174 mg per 100g

(HERMIDA et al., 2006) and

147–194mgper 100g(HERMIDA et

al., 2006; WILLIAMS,2007), respectively.

HERNANDEZ et al. (2010)reported

that the consumption of 100grabbit

meat provides vitamin Bcontents:

approximately 8% of the total daily

requirement of vitamin B2,12% of

Nutritional composition

Tab. 4: Nutritional composition of various unconventional bird

meats in comparison to chicken

Parameters Emu Ostrich Rhea Chicken

pH 5.69 6.12 5.99 5.78

Moisture 73.80 76.2 74.72 72.7

Protein 22.86 21.6 22.81 24.9

Fat 0.84 1.1 1.59 0.90

Ash 1.81 1.1 1.62 1.18

Moisture:protein ratio 3.22 3.52 3.27 2.91

Energy (kcal/100 g) 111.1 92 105 141.87

Sources: miscellaneous

Source: VERMA et al. FLEISCHWIRTSCHAFT international 3_2017

vitamin B5, 21% of vitamin B6,and

77% of vitamin B3.WOOD et al.

(2008) reported that rabbit meat

contains around 60% unsaturated

fatty acids (UFA) of the total fat, and

the polyunsaturated fatty acid

(PUFA) amount which represents

32.5% of the total fat is much higher

as compared to other meats. They

also reported that linoleic acid

(18:2 n-6) is the most important part

in feeds for all animals. Obtained

completely from the diet, its inclusion

into fatty tissue and muscle in

percentage to the quantity in the diet

is higher as compared to the other

FAs. HERNÀNDEZ et al. (2010)documented

that in rabbit meat it accounts

approximately 22±4.7% of

total FAs. They also reported that

α-linolenic acid (18:3 n-3) is the

most important fatty acid in alfalfa

grass, araw material generally

plentiful in rabbit diets. The presence

of large quantity of α-linolenic

acid in rabbit meat contributes to

the maximum percentage of total

n-3 FA. Whereas researchers reported

that among long chain (C20-

22) PUFAs, the eicosapentaenoic

acid (EPA, 20:5 n-3) percentage in

rabbit loin meat accounts 0.15%and

the docosahexaenoic acid (DHA,

22:6 n-3) content accounts approximately

0.31% of total FA. Comparing

to beef (8.9), pork (21.9) and

chicken (15.8) meat the n-6:n-3 ratio

of lean meat obtained from rabbit

loin shows afairly low ratio (7.0).

Emu, ostrich and

rhea meat

An overview of the characteristic

composition of several meat varieties

of different ratites are given in

Tables 3and 4.


(2016)reported that at present the

rising demand for ratite meat, including

ostrich, emu, and rhea has

been observed all over the world.

However,recently consumers as well

as meat producers still have inadequate

and scattered information

about this kind of meat, particularly

in the case of emu and rhea. Researchers

reported that the carcass

yields and composition characteristics

among ratites are similar,with

the exception of ahigher quantity of

fat in emu meat. The color of the

meat obtained from ostrich, emu,

and rhea is darker as compared to

beef. Ratite meat acidification is

more similar to beef as compared to

chicken. Ratite meat has unique

properties because of its low level of

lipids, higher quantity of polyunsaturated

fatty acids (PUFA), adesirable

n6/n3 ratio, and ahigh iron content

in comparison to beef and poultry

meat. The meat is also superior in

some minerals such as selenium,

copper,vitamin B, and biologically

active peptides such as creatine

(emu) and anserine (ostrich), and

has alow amount of sodium (ostrich).

The presence of large quantity

of bioactive compounds such as

PUFA, makes ratite meat highly

vulnerable to lipid oxidation and

requires more research regarding

prevention of rancidity with discovery

of novel antioxidant compounds,

new innovation in intelligent packaging

system for protection of nutritional

and technological characteristics

of this meat.


studied the assessment of Cielab

color indices of the M. iliofibularis

obtained from 14 month old and 8

years old ostriches. They reported

that an increase in age is accompanied

with asignificant (P


Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017


Composition of unconventional meats


Instrumental color profiles

Tab. 4: Instrumental color profiles of various unconventional

bird meats in comparison to chicken

Parameters Emu Ostrich Rhea Chicken

L* 34.40 28.47 36.20 46.62

a* 11.94 19.62 16.50 4.76

b* –0.40 14.28 8.10 6.69

Hue 12.06 36.22 – –

Chroma 202 24.32 – –

Sources: MENON et al. (2014); LEYGONIE et al. (2012) and miscellaneous

Source: VERMA et al. FLEISCHWIRTSCHAFT international 3_2017

Among the minerals sodium

(34.7 mg per 100gedible meat) and

iron (3.14 mg per 100gedible meat)

–both influenced significantly by the

type of muscle –obsessed considerably

lower and higher values, respectively,than

values documented for

beef and poultry.

HOFFMAN et al. (2008) studied the

meat obtained from three genotypes

of ostrich. South African Black

(Black) ostriches and Zimbabwean

Blue (Blue) ostriches as well as their

cross were examined for physical

and sensory quality characteristics.

Generally ostriches of acommercially

purpose are slaughtered at the

age of 14 months; elder reared

under the similar environment

were utilized. The pH observed at

24 hwas the highest in the pure

Blue genotype and therefore meat

obtained from this genotype was

the darkest in color and also had the

lowest percentage loss in drip and

cooking loss. While comparing the

pure Blue genotype to the pure

Black genotype, 70% of the muscles

had an elevated pH, 50% of the

muscles were reddish in color and

considerably less saturated in color,

67% of the muscles had alower drip

loss and 50% of the muscles had a

lower cooking loss. There is anonsignificant

genotypic dissimilarity

observed concerning the instrumental

toughness, nor the sensory

assessment of the meat.

LEYGONIE et al. (2012)studied the

pair-wise assessment of the meat

quality characteristics between fresh

and frozen/thawed M. iliofibularis.

Thirty-two (sixteen left; sixteen

right) muscles were obtained and

allocated to two groups: fresh and

frozen/thawed. The frozen vacuumpacked

group was stored for one

month at –20 °C before thawing.

The fresh group had asignificantly

higher pH, asignificantly higher

water binding capacity,significantly

higher CIE L*, CIE a*and Chroma

indices as compared to the frozen/

thawed groups. The findings

demonstrate that the fresh group

was bright red in appearance and

had minimum exudates. The

frozen/thawed group lost 5.09%

moisture during thawing and had a

significantly higher drip loss and

significantly higher shear force.

However,similar results were obtained

with regard to cooking loss,

CIE b*, hue and TBARS values. The

study also suggested that the protein

oxidation was significantly lower in

the frozen/thawed group, which was

accredited to the significantly higher

protein concentration negating the

higher significantly carbonyl content.

However,the industrial freezing

and thawing regimes negatively

affected the quality of ostrich meat.

MENON et al. (2014)studied the

quality characteristics of meat obtained

from emus transported for

6hbefore slaughter.Inthis study

the authors took 42 emus in two

tests, which was carried out under

hot and cool climatic conditions,

respectively.The researchers observed

that the males had aconsiderably

higher quantity of fat as compared

to the females. The results

revealed that approximately 38.1% of

the total emus had no injury or

bruises, 40.5% had bruises, while

21.4% had small injuries after transport.

Flesh obtained from injured

emus had aappreciably higher pH.

In hot climatic conditions, emus

exhibited aconsiderably higher loss

in body weight as compared to cool

climatic conditions. The drip loss in

flesh after 24 hofstorage was more

in emus which had higher live

weight loss after transport. These

findings validate the unfavorable

effects of transport stress on meat

quality parameters.

PEGG et al. (2006) studied the

nutritional composition (i.e., macro

and micro constituents) of emu

(Dromaius novaehollandiae,

Latham)meat and avalue-added

meat product prepared from it.

They reported that presence of

certain contents such as creatine,

creatinine and phosphocreatine in

fresh emu meat and the effect of

processing on these bioactives

throughout the manufacture of

jerky were of particular interest.


The emu meat jerky was compared

with beef jerky as control. The

proximate composition of the jerky

showed that the macro constituents

of fresh emu meat and the prepared

jerky meat product were not

so different from the beef standard.

The estimation of the micro ingredients

in emu meat samples

showed that the levels of anumber

of nutritionally essential fat and

water soluble vitamins and minerals

were characteristic for those of

red meat. The amount of creatine

in emu meat is almost comparable

to that of beef; whereas asomewhat

higher creatine concentration was

observed in the emu jerky than in

its beef counterpart. The study

concluded that apotential for the

emu meat snack is to be measured

as afunctional meat product for

athletes looking for performance

improvement, and consumers,

who are concerned in consuming

larger amount of creatine from

natural food products.

SALES et al. (1999) studied the

effect of species and muscle on the

intramuscular lipid percent, cholesterol

content and fatty acid profile of

meat obtained from Greater and

Lesser Rhea. Muscle types has no

effect on any of these quality characteristics.

The results exhibited that

neither the intramuscular lipid nor

the cholesterol content differ significantly

between the species. Despite

significant differences in the proportion

of individual fatty acids content,

the total saturated fatty acids did not

differ significantly between species,

whereas total monounsaturated fatty

acids was observed significantly

lower and total polyunsaturated fatty

acids considerably higher for

Greater as compared to Lesser Rhea.


On some points, uncommon meat

varieties offer distinct advantages

compared to traditional meat varieties.

This opens up further possibilities

for the development of novel

meat products.


Literature references can be requested

from the corresponding author or the

editorial office, respectively.

Authors’ addresses

Akhilesh K. Verma (corresponding author:

vetakhilesh@rediffmail.com; corresponding

address: Vill &Post-Rukunpur-kasimpur,

Tehsil-Jalalpur, Distric-Ambedkar Nagar,

Uttar predesh-224149India), Pavan Kumar

and Nitin Mehta, Department of Livestock

Products Technology College of Veterinary

Science, Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and

Animal Sciences University Ludhiana –

141004, India; Pramila Umaraw, Address

House No. 549, W2 Damodar Nagar, District-

Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh, India –208027; A.

Prajapati, National Institute of Veterinary

Epidemiology and Disease Informatics,

Hebbal, Bengaluru-560024, Karnataka, India;

Devendra Kumar, Division of Livestock

Products Technology, ICAR-National

Research Centre on Camel, Bikaner,

Rajasthan, India, 334022.


Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017


New robot pulls ribs from pork belly

DMRI’s robot is built on previous innovative measures

Aunique robot from Danish Meat

Research Institute sets the standard

for effective and economically

advantageous pulling of ribs from

pork belly.The robot, which is

expected to be ready for sale from

the first quarter of 2018,isable to

eventually take over the hard work

of deboning the pork belly.

By Niels-Henrik Grothe

andCarsten Jensen

Pork belly delivered as aregular

piece of meat has been the goal

for the slaughterhouse industry

ever since they started the production

of bacon. At the same time,

fresh pork belly without ribs has

grown into amuch-requested item

on the Asian market. No wonder

the slaughterhouses have been very

focused on constantly improving

the production.

In the beginning, the pork belly

was deboned with aknife. In order

to detach the ribs as clean as possible

and not destroy the membranes

of the meat, the operators would cut carefully along the ribs and then

afterwards pull the ribs free from the meat using their fingers. It was

particularly straining to the arms and fingers of the operators, which is

why asmall tool was invented in the seventies. The tool consisted of a

t-shaped handle with anylon loop. The operator would pull the loop under

the ribs by hand in order to release the ribs from the meat without the

membranes being destroyed. Intact meat membranes help to keep the

drip loss as small as possible.

Ahand tool with air cylinder, guide and support

T-shaped handle with anylon loop for pulling the ribs. Photos: DMRI

Despite the improvements, it was still atough job to debone the meat, and

in that light anew improved hand tool, produced by Frontmatec, saw the

light of day.Anair cylinder pulling the string under the ribs to the heads

of the ribs replaced the heavy pull of the loop by the operator.The tool is

used today in many slaughterhouses, where deboning of pork belly is

done, but there is aconsiderable risk of the operators’ hands being injured

because either the ribs hit back in the hand or the operator gets his fingers

caught in the string during the pulling. Therefore, working with this tool

requires several months of training in the necessary techniques before the

operator is familiar with the tool and is able to deliver an acceptable speed

of production and agood quality of the deboned bellies, which are often

the raw material for bacon.

Due to the risk of injuries, DMRI continued the development of the

tool. In 2015,this led to anew edition of the air cylinder tool, now provided

with aguide manoeuvring the nylon loop down under the ribs by itself.

Consequently,the operator no longer needs to place his fingers near the

string. Furthermore, aspecial support was built into the tool. The support

holds the rib down towards the meat during pulling in order to avoid that

the ribs bend up or break. The support took over the operator’s task of

avoiding the ribs to bend or break by pressing the palm of his hand towards

the bone during pulling.

The takeover of the task was not only to the benefit of the safety of the

operator but also for the consumers. That is, the operator protected his

hand with aprotection and steel glove but when the steel glove is worn,

there is arisk of the steel rings falling down on the meat, thus reaching

the consumers as an unwanted foreign body.

Idea arises from the new role of the operator

With the guide and the support in the air cylinder tool in place and the tool

being patented by DMRI, some of the risqué factors disappeared for the

operator and the consumer.The time of training among the operators was

reduced as well from several months to less than aweek, among other

things because the role of the operator changed. The need for handiness,

which was previous necessary for the ribs being pulled correctly and with

Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017



great speed, was gone. Putinformally,now the task of the operators is

being eyes and arms when they pull the ribs. Eyes to supervise that the

string is pulled correctly and arms to hold the tool.

The development and realization of the new role of the operator was the

fact that gave DMRI the idea of developing arobot that replaces the eyes of

the operator with asystem of recognition and the arms of the operator

with an industrial robot that holds the pulling tool.

Economy and conditions of work

The new robot developed by Danish Meat Research Institute (DMRI) is

able to make the process more effective, more economically profitable and

at the same time improve the working environment and quality of the

handled meat cuts.

First of all, the financial gain is generated because the robot saves the

costs for employees and for the training of employees, which is often

difficult and time-consuming. Secondly,the precision work of the robot

secures that the ribs are pulled out leaving aminimum of meat remaining

on the bones. Consequently,the meat appears solid and with the membranes

as intact as possible, partly raising the quality of the meat and partly

enabling the meat to hold on to the brine, which is injected in the meat

during production, especially important in the production of bacon.

Thirdly,the robot will result in the fact that slaughterhouses that are right

now planning aproduction with aredeployment no longer experience this


When it comes to working environment, the use of robotic deboning of

ribs will lead to asignificant lowering of the risk of work related injuries

connected to deboning. The manual air tools used today for pulling the

ribs are very noisy,when the compressed air is activated. Compressed air

in food quality is one of the most expensive operating resources in meat

processing and should be used as economical as possible to keep production

costs low.Furthermore, manual air tools are heavy to handle even

though they hang in relieving springs. When they are activated, they

transmit strokes and vibrations up through the arms and shoulders of the

operators. This load will disappear when the robot takes over the pulling of

the ribs.

DMRI aims high at efficiency and accuracy

The robot from DMRI is an advanced successor to the air cylinder tool,

which most slaughterhouses use today for pulling of ribs. Basically,the

institute has developed asystem, which combines two elements, namely

an automatic and adaptive pulling tool built together with an industrial

robot as well as avision based system of recognition, which is able to point

out exactly where the ribs are placed on the meat. Apicture processing

system sends the coordinates to the robot, which automatically places the

pulling tool correctly in proportion to the ribs. Subsequently the pulling

process begins.

The ambitions of the efficiency and accuracy of the robot solutions are

high. During the development in 2017,the machine will be able to handle

up to 525 pieces of pork belly per hour and to detach up to 12 ribs. Afterwards,

the detached ribs will be manually removed together with another

trimming. In order to be able to detach up to 6300 ribs per hour,itis

essential that the equipment is developed to be able to pull at least three

ribs at atime between every removal of the tool. Today,the equipment

pulls one rib at atime.

In order to secure ahigh efficiency as well alow percentage of error,the

robot is equipped with an x-ray equipment able to localize the ribs and

their exact placing. When the efficiency of the robot is of ahigh quality

and the percentage of error is acceptably low,then potentially,the robot

will be able to take over the work of pulling ribs from pork belly under the

conditions in ameat processing plant.


Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017


New robot pulls ribs from pork belly

An air cylinder pulling the string under the ribs and replaces the heavy pull of

the loop by the operator.

Anew generation of the air cylinder tool

minimises the risk of injuries.

To reduce potential risk for the operators and the consumers, the DMRI

developed arib pulling roboter.

Development in collaboration with the users

InJanuary 2016 DMRIlaunchedthe work with the development of the

robot and already at the IFFA fair in May2016,the institute was able to

show avideo of aprototype solution in function for automatically pulling

of ribs from pork belly.DMRI got several inquiries from interested machinery

manufacturers regarding acooperation of the commercial continuation

of the project and the Danish equipment manufacturer Frontmatec,

formerly Attec, was chosen. They have been granted license to the

DMRI patent on the robot. NowDMRI is assisting Frontmatec in the

further development and optimization work and the goal is to have an

automatic equipment ready for test in aslaughterhouse during the first

quarter of 2018.For half acentury DMRI has contributed innovative solutions

to the slaughterhouse industry across the world. The development of

solutions takes place in close cooperation with the users and is based on

their experiences and needs. This is also the case with the new robot

solution, as the slaughterhouse industry has demanded equipment able to

eliminate manual processes with great loads of the working environment

for many years. Hence, the robot is developed in cooperation with the

Danish slaughterhouse group Danish Crown and is financed by the Pig

Levy Fund until end of 2016.

Niels-Henrik Grothe

is Director of DMRI Automation at the Automation Centre. He is responsible for a

broad range of tasks related to the development of machines and processes,

primarilyfor the slaughter industry, but also for the food industry.

Carsten Jensen

is Technical Manager and Product Manager of the Automation Centre at the

Taastrup facility of the DMRI. As Chief Engineer he is responsible for the development

of technology and innovation of materials.

Author’s address

Niels-Henrik Grothe (hgr@dti.dk) and Carsten Jensen (cj@dti.dk), Danish Meat Research Institute,

Gregersensvej 9, 2630 Taastrup, Denmark

Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017



Process technology for niche products

Ever wider product portfolios call for smaller batches that can be produced cost-efficiently

Individual and application-specific

production facilities can be put

together from logically arranged

individual machines linked with

suitable conveyor installations.

Machinery and equipment manufactured

by Inotec from Reutlingen

are used in the meat and fish

processing industry and to produce

processed cheese, baby food,

soups, ready meals, and in the

fruit and vegetable industry.These

are generally facilities for largescale

production quantities.

By Frank Loeffler

Today’s market circumstances

are increasingly forcing food

producers (and of course their

partners in the machine manufacturing

industry) to offer ever more

niche products. Today bio, halal,

kosher,vegan, vegetarian, organic,

light and so on can be found in the

comprehensive programmes

offered by meat product producers.

However,the production

quantities required are not large

enough to fully utilise large production

facilities on aconventional

industrial scale. Furthermore,

given the large variety of

specific directives and requirements

involved, in many cases

rules prevent the normal facilities

installed for conventional products

from being used to produce

these special products. Despite

this, such special products are

Integrated machines unite a

number of consecutive process

steps in asingle unit.

Even speciality products with small production volumes such as soya or tofu products need to be produced cost-efficientlyin

relativelysmall batches.

extremely important for many

meat product producers as they

demonstrate customer proximity,

frequently serve as door-openers

for new trading partners, or consolidate

ties with longstanding

trade partners. In order to help

producers to satisfy these requirements

on ahandable way,Inotec

offers mini facilities and small

production units that can also

process relatively small special

batches cost-efficiently in the

same quality,like large batches.

The right mixing technology

for all requirements

This new and patented mixing

technology works with two

counter-rotating and interacting

spiral shafts. Each spiral has its

own independent speed-controlled

drive. The material to be

mixed is thus mixed quickly and

very gently.The new control of

type Process Sequence Control

makes it possible to modify the

mixing speeds and intervals, the

vacuum level or the temperature

during each stage of the process.

This enables for instance improved

uptake of brine in meat

pieces for producing all kinds of

cooked ham. Another new feature

of the Vario Mix technology is the

option of using high-speed drives

that are advantageous for certain

products. Forexample, products

that contain ahigh proportion of

dry ingredients (e.g. tofu) can be

processed optimally in this way.

Emulsifying technology for

small batches and specialities

Inotec offers auniquely fullrange

programme of emulsifiers

with ahopper on the inlet side,

machines that can be connected

to afeeding pump (pump fed

inline technology), machines

with vertical mixing tools in

round conical hoppers and vacuum

machines. The company


Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017


Process technology for niche products

successfully launched the fourstage

cutting system on the market

already in 2007. The four-stage

cutting technology with acutting

set that can be set and adjusted

automatically has now become

standard worldwide for costefficient

and hygienic production

of fine emulsions. In the meantime

the cutting technology is also

available with afive-stage cutting

system. The modular structure of

the cutting set also makes it possible

to use the new Speed Spin-

System, which lends adifferent

structure to aseries of products.

All emulsifiers from this manufacturer

are equipped with the

tried and tested horizontally movable

cutter housing and acomputer-controlled

servo motor.The

cutting set is thus set repeatably

and continuously readjusted.

These emuslifiers consequently

work with minimal wear.

A“Mini Line”consisting of a

Vario Mix and an emulsifier is an

universal production system for

salami and minced meat products,

fine emulsions and all kinds of

cooked ham. It can be used costefficiently

for both start-ups and

small production quantities in

larger industrial plants.

Delicatessen products such as dips, sauces or chutneys are becoming ever more

popular with consumers, but frequentlydonot involve any large quantity

volumes in production.

Integrated installations

combine process steps

There is atrend towards integrated

production installations and the

company offers such versatile

systems on the basis of the vacuum

emulsifier type I175, an automatic

and integrated processing equipment,

and on the basis of the emulsifier

type I140, an universal processing

unit. Built up on amodular

basis, these universal machines can

cover the complete production

process in one machine and are

thus suitable for supplying the

niche markets (e.g. halal, kosher,

vegan, vegetarian) with products

produced cost-efficiently.

The systems offer the process

stages cooking/boiling/ thermal

processing (with direct steam

injection), vacuumizing, mixing,

finest size reduction by cutting and

conveying to afilling machine

connected in series or to asilo, all

in acompact complete unit. With

processing vessels from 270 to 500

l, up to six batches can be run every

hour depending on the product.

These machines give plant

operators maximum flexibility

and enable them to produce even

Integrated machines are particularlyexpedient for small production volumes –

the reduction of product losses caused by changing machines is amajor

advantage here. Even complex processes with several steps can be realized.

small batches of special produts

quickly,hygienically and flexibly.

The systems are suitable for

smoothies made from fruit or

vegetables, processed cheese

products, spreads such as vegetable,

meat and fish pastes, baby

food and hospital food.

The concept allows

intuitive operation

Anovel concept for operating

Inotec machines was presented at

the IFFA 2016 trade fair.All parameters

can be configured intuitively

on alarge 10.6 inch touchscreen


fashion and with clear display

symbols, allowing particularly

smooth and easy introduction of a

new machine into aplant or another

department. This new highperformance

control permits

outstanding operating safety and

reliability,aswell as validating the

processes run and the traceability

of individual production batches.

Inotec has also introduced anew

design for nearly all machines that

not only allows improved functioning,

but also better handling

and excellent hygiene.

Frank Loeffler

Dipl.-Wirt.-Ing., is amember

of the technical sales staff

at Inotec and responsible for

marketing food production

machinery in all sectors of the food industry.

Author’s address

Frank Loeffler (loeffler@inotecgmbh.de),

Inotec GmbH, Maschinenentwicklung und

Vertrieb, Dieselstrasse 1, 72770 Reutlingen,


Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017


Industry News


Very high yield cooked ham products

Metalquimia S.A.U. from Girona,

Spain, presents the manufacturing

process for “very high yield”

whole-muscle cooked meat

products for the first time in the

company’shistory.The combination

of Triplex and Turbomeat

technologies provides the highest

injection and productivity

rates on the market and the

highest final yields with maximum

precision, obtaining brine distribution

and color uniformity.

The new technology allows

meat processors to accelerate

the massage and maturation

process for cooked meat products,

resulting in markedly

shorter processing times without

having to give up the versatility,

the results (in consistency and

binding) and the technological

and organoleptic advantages of

conventional technologies. The

combined work of Turbomeat

Intensive Accelerated Massage

technology together with Triplex

injection technology offers synergies

that greatlyfacilitate the

absorption of free brine, thus

preventing the formation of intermuscular

exudate to produce

products with very high yields

(230 to 260%).


Stork &Herrmann

Proven experience

in mixers

The performance of Westfaliamixing

machines designed by

Stork &Herrmann from Güterloh,

Germany, is the result of more

than 90-years experience in the

production of mixing machines

over four generations. Continuous

adjustment to the latest knowledge

in meat processing assures

the high performance level of this

mixing machines.

Due to the special design of the

spiral mixing element the Westfalia-mixing

machines are unique

in being able to mix and form

long-keeping sausages in one

operation. The sausage meat is

neither mashed nor heated. With

the machine also ham cuts can

easilybetumbled without the

need of any change-over.For the

processing of German-style

sausages like frankfurter-type

sausages or cooked sausages,

pastries, salads and other tender

substances achange in direction

of the bowl is recommended.

The hemispherical trough is

highlysuited for the economical

blending of even very small quantities

up to 1/3ofthe trough

filling level by using counterrotation.

Housing parts meet highest

quality standards. They are made

out of solid stainless steel and

are, of course, corrosion-resistant.

Special seals provide for

soil-free operation of the complete

rotation system. All rollers

are made out of plastic material

and allow for good mobility.The

well thought-out design provides

for easy handling properties.

Operation in practice as well as

cleaning will fullycome up to met

processor’s demands.




Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017


Save fermentation of aspeciality

Starter cultures allow the opimization of atraditional Chinese cured rabbit-meat product

Astudy from China showed that

computer-controlled air drying and

fermentation with addition of

microbial starter culture can reduce

the contents of nitrite and nitrosamine

to acertain extent, promote

the development of flavor amino

acid and volatile components enhancing

flavor,and improve the

product quality and safety of Chansi-rabbit

to acertain extent.

By Wang Wei, Zhang Jiamin,

Jürgen Schwing, Ji Lili

andBai Ting

Rabbit meat has high nutritional

value. It is rich in protein,

essential amino acids, lecithin and

polyunsaturated fatty acids, characterized

by low cholesterol, low

fat, low calorie and high digestion

rate, and known as ameat product

with high biological value.Rabbit

breeding and processing of the

meat has atraditional history in

China. Various rabbit meat products

such as salted and cured

rabbit meat (cured rabbit meat,

pressed salted rabbit meat and air

dried rabbit meat products),

sauced and stewed rabbit meat and

rabbit meat floss have always been

hot products in the market.

Among them, the cured rabbit

meat (Chansi-Rabbit) is aunique

and famous product in regions of

Western Sichuan Plain. The product

is processed in factories or

widely produced in ordinary families

by simply pickling and drying

raw materials. Thus it is one of the

traditional meat products with a

high output and consumption in

Sichuan. The cured rabbit meat is

well received by customers due to

Fig. 1: The packaging design, which appeals to the Chinese taste, underscores

the special character of the product.

its long history,attractive appearance

(Fig. 1) andunique flavor.

The traditional Chansi-Rabbit

counts for typical Intermediate

Moisture Foods (IMF) and cured

and smoked meat products have

good microbiological stability and

durability.The product is traditionally

processed in low temperature

seasons. Microbial fermentation, fat

oxidation and protein degradation

in the traditional air drying process

have significant impact on the

development of the unique flavor of

the product, this is why air dried

products and products rapidly dried

by baking are favored by consumers.

Butthe traditional air

drying processing is limited by

season, and the original processing

method has some potential safety

hazards such as reproduction of

harmful microbes, generation of

nitrosamine and biogenic amines,

acid value over standard and oxidative

rancidity of fat, restricting the

expansion of sales and sales groups

of the product.

In recent years, use of modern

processing and safety control

technology to improve the quality

of traditional products, especially

use of biological fermentation

technology to improve the flavor of

products, inhibiting the generation

of hazardous substances and

prolonging the shelf life, has received

wide attention. In addition,

relevant studies have been carried

out on the safety guarantee and

quality improvement of cured

rabbit meat and other rabbit meat


In earlier studies, the processing

of Chansi-Rabbit by the traditional

method of natural air drying

was replaced by the automatically

controlled system. Standardizing

parameters such as temperature,

humidity and wind speed make it

Moisture, aw, pH

Tab. 1: The results of moisture, water activity and pH measures

Index Group D Group S

Moisture (%) 45.85±0.92 47.1 ±0.49

aw 0.86±0.004 0.87±0.002

pH 5.91±0.20 5.77±0.34

Source: WEI et al. FLEISCHWIRTSCHAFT international 3_2017


Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017


Save fermentation of aspeciality

possible to produce those products

allover the year instead in the

low temperature seasons only.In

the next step the use of starter

culture to improve the product

quality and safety was introduced.

According to ascreening experiment,

products processed with

the starter culture Bactoferm

SM-194elaborated by Chr.

Hansen, Denmark, consisting of

Pediococcus pentosaceus, Staphylococcus


losus, Staphylococcus

carnosus, Lactobacillus sakei and

Debaromyces hansenii,inacontrolled

air drying process were

more in line with Chinese consumption

habits. The recent study

presents the impact of this starter

culture on the physiochemical,

microbial and fl

avor characteristics

of the cured rabbit meat

product compared with traditional

products, and discusses the possibility

of using modern process

and microbial fermentation technology

to improve the processing

of traditional salted and cured

products, and the improvements

to the product quality and safety.

Materials and


Chilled rabbit meat provided ashort

time after slaughtering from

Sichuan Hage Rabbit Industry Co.,

Ltd., and cold store until processing

was the raw material for the tests

(Fig. 2). This meat was mixed with

30 g/kg salt, 5g/kg glucose, 2g/kg

sodium D-isoascorbate, 0.10 g/kg

sodium nitrite, 10 g/kg white spirit

and 60 g/kg mixed natural spice.

The trial group (group S) received

an additional dose of 0.20 g/kg of

the starter culture Bactoferm

SM-194. After wrapping (Fig. 3) to

achive the traditional shape, which

is expected from the Chineses

consumers for this product, the

meat was dried and fermented until

finishing following practical-proven


Acomputer-controlled climatic

chamber simulated the conventional

natural air-drying process.

The first stage of the process lasts

3days at temperatures of 14-16 °C, a

relative humidity of 70-75% and an

air speed of 0.5-0.8 m/s. The second

Fig. 2: Chansi rabbit is produced from complete rabbit carcasses.

stage lasts 6-7 days at temperatures

of 10-12°Cand arelative humidity

of 75-80% with an air speed of

0.1-0.2 m/s. After the process the

product is vacuum-packed and

stored at ambient temperatures for

2to3days; then it is recognized as a

finished product.

In order to provide adetailed

picture of the two experimental

groups, very detailed investigations

were carried out. The water content,

the aw-and pH-value, the nitrite

content and the content of N-nitrosamines

as well as the content of

histamine were determined using

general physico-chemical parameters

following the relevant national

standards of China.

Because microbiology is of particular

importance in the product

group of fermented products, 25 g

of sample were taken in each of the

groups (S with starter cultures and

Dwithout starter cultures) for the

determination of the total germ

count, E. coli, Salmonella and

Staphylococcus aureus with sterile

scissors. After the comminution,

the test samples were fi

lled up with

225 ml of sterile distilled water,

mixed homogeneously in ahomogenizer

for 5min and then diluted

1:10toaconcentration suitable for

the investigation. With apipette,

1mlofbacterial suspension was

then given on each plate, provided

with selective culture media for the

various microorganisms, and then

homogeneously mixed. After solidifi

cation, the batches were cultivated

in an incubator at 37 °C for 48 hand

finally counted.

In order to determine the content

of free amino acids in both groups,

aslightly modifi

ed determination

method according to SILVAN (1999)

was applied. Forthis purpose, the

sample material was fi

rst pretreated

by adding 60 ml of a0.2 mol/l

concentrated phosphate buffered

saline solution (pH 6.5) to 6g

sample material and then homogenizing

mechanically at 6000 rpm for

3min. After afi frst centrifugal

separation at 10000 gat4°C for

20 min., 0.5 ml of the resulting clear

liquid was taken and adjusted to a

pH of 2.0 with 3% salicylic acid.

After addition of 0.25 ml of bidistilled

water,asecond centrifugal

separation was carried out at

15,000 gand 4°Cfor 20 min. From

the clear liquid formed in this step,

another 0.5 ml were taken and

tested with an automatic amino acid

analyzer.Acitric acid buffer solution

(pH 3.3-4.9) was used as eluant

and as acolorant aninhydrin:

methylglycol:sodium acetate buffer

solution in aratio of 2:75:25. The

content of hydroxyproline was

determined at 440 nm, the content

of other amino acids at 570 nm.

Because the specifi

ctaste of the

product is particularly important,

the content of fl

avoring agents was

determined by gas chromatography

Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017



Fig. 3: In order to achieve the typical appearance, the rabbit carcasses are wrapped with yarn.

by determination of the aromatic

components in both batches. After

the extraction of the flavoring

agents from the products by solidphase

microextraction (SPME), the

individual components were ionized

in aGas Chromatograph Mass

Spectrometer Type 7890B-5977A

from Agilent Technologies, USA.

The test data was analyzed in


Changes in water

content, aw and pH

The results of the determination of

water content, aw and pH during the

processing of both groups are

shown in Figures 4, 5and 6.

The moisture contents and awvalues

of group D(without starter

culture) and group S(with starter

culture) had no substantial differences.

Although the pH-values had

no significant difference, the pHvalue

of group Swas lower.Itwas

obviously attributed to acid production

of lactic acid bacteria added by

the starter culture during the fermentation

process. It was more

obviously that the pH-value decreased

after day 4offermentation

and drying; it slowly decreased until

day 10 and slightly increased after

day 12,which might be attributed to

the combined action of the process

and microbes.

Forfast fermented and dried

meat products, lactic acid bacteria

contribute to the special sensory

features and taste of the products by

rapid reduction of the pH value. In

products that have alonger fermentation

time, the main sensory effects

are contributed by Micrococci. To

improve the taste by the breakdown

of protein and fat, they play an

increasingly important role. Increasing

acid values during the

process of cured rabbit meat has

always been one of the problems,

affecting the stable quality of traditional

cured rabbit meat products,

but it will not produce great influence

on the overall quality of the

product in case of proper control.

According to the test results

shown in Table 1, the moisture

content, aw and pH of group Dand

group Sare within the range of

features of fermented and cured

products. These products are typical

intermediate moisture foods (IMF)

with aw of 0.90 to 0.60. Products

within this aw-range have good

microbial stability and storage

stability at ambient temperatures.

Although the pH-value of group Sis

low,the products are within the

range of low pH foods adapting to

Chinese consumption habits. According

to studies of WEI et al., meat

products with aw of about 0.8 and

pH of 5.8 to 6.0 are more in line

with Chinese consumption habits.





Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017


Save fermentation of aspeciality

Source: WEI et al. FLEISCHWIRTSCHAFT international 3_2017

Fig. 4: Water activity tendency during the process

The addition of lactic acid bacteria

to fast fermented salami and other

fermented products, that give atoo

strong pH-drop and atoo sour


avor has low market acceptance in

China. Therefore, the microbial

strains used for processing Chinese

sausage shall mainly consist of

Staphylococcus carnosus and Staphylococcus


losus to promote the

development of fl

avor,rather than

very fast fermenting strains. This is

why Bactoferm SM-194was used as

the microbial starter culture in the

experiment. This starter culture is a

well-balanced mix of Staphylococcus

carnosus, Staphylococcus xy


Pediococcus pentosaceus, Lactobacillus

sakei and Debaromyces hansenii. The

products manufactured with this

starter culture have apHthat is very

well accepted by Chinese consumers.

The nitrite contents of the experimental

group and the control group

did not exceed the limit value

(30 mg/kg) in the national food

safety standard of China. The content

in group Swas 110.75 µg/kg

and signifi

cantly lower than the

content (158.37 µg/kg) of in

group D, which may be related to

the function of microbes contained

in the starter culture. The combined

strains of Pediococcus pentosaceus,

Staphylococcus xy

losus, Staphylococcus

carnosus and Lactobacillus sakei

used in the study had the capability

of degrading nitrite. Under the

induction of nitrite, Staphylococci

Tab. 2: The testing results of nitrite, nitrosamines and histamine


Index Group D Group S

Nitrite (µg/kg) 158.37±1.08 a 110.75±1.47

N-dimethyl nitrosamine

4.92±0.64 a 2.23±0.26


N-diethyl nitrosamine (µg/kg) 52.15±0.68 a 21.50±0.37

Histamine (mg/kg) 42.12±0.65 a 26.25±0.73

Note: a meansp


Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017



Source: WEI et al. FLEISCHWIRTSCHAFT international 3_2017

Fig. 5: Moisture content tendency during the process

and Lactobacillus plantarum can

produce nitrite reductase, and had

an important role in reducing nitrite

content during the maturation

process of fermented product.

ZHANG QINGFANG et al. found in a

study that Lactobacilli can degrade

nitrite mainly by enzymatic action,

when pH is more than 4.5. When

the cured rabbit meat was air-dried

and fermented, nitrite reductase

produced from fermenting microbes

can also play arole in degrading

nitrite under specific pH conditions.

The content of N-dimethylnitrosamine

was 2.23 µg/kg in and

the content of N-diethylnitrosamine

was up to 21.50 µg/kg in group S

(Tab. 2). In group D, the content of

N-dimethylnitrosamine was

4.92 µg/kg and the content of

N-diethylnitrosamine was up to

52.15 µg/kg. The contents of

group Swere obviously lower than

those of group D. In group D, the

content of nitrosamine N-dimethylnitrosamine

was close to the critical

value in the national food safety

standard of N-dimethylnitrosamine,

which is lower than

5 µg/kg. Nitrosamines were generally

obtained by chemical conversion

of nitrite and nitrate, and

nitrite in group Shad alow content

after microbial degradation, thus

making the content of nitrosamines

low.This is consistent with the

study result obtained by YU LIJUN et

al. Starter culture added to meat

products can reduce the content of

nitrite due to microbial action. In

other study results, that nitrosamine

contents in products

with high nitrite residues may not

be high, but depend on the product

type and corresponding processing

and storage process.

The previous studies showed that

histamine in cured meat products is

one of the main components of

biogenic amine residues, and a

biogenic amine with strongest

toxicity produced from free amino

acids under the function of amino

acid decarboxylase. The content of

histamine in fish food shall be not

more than 1000 mg/kg as stated in

the national standard of China.

There is no regulation in China on

the content of histamine in cured

meat products, and it is believed

that the content of histamine more

than 100mg/kg can cause mild

poisoning to healthy persons.

Therefore, histamine was taken as

the main test object of biogenic

amine in the study.The results

show that the content was

42.12 mg/kg in group Dand the

content in group Swas obviously

lower than in group Dand equaled

26.25 mg/kg. Although histamine

in these groups was within the

safety range, the residues were

significantly lower after process

improvement and application of

microbial starter cultures.



The microbiological results of the

finished products are shown in

Table 3. The total microbial counts

were 1.4×10 6 Cfu/g for group Dand

1.38×10 7 Cfu/g for group S. Pathogenic

bacteria were not detected,

proving the good microbial safety of

the half-dried cured meat products.

The microbial difference of the

products mainly involved micrococcus

and lactobacillus. The microbial

growth curve of Group Sshowed an

increasing growing speed of bacterial

colonies between day 0and

day 7. Then growth curve became

smoother by the reduction of moisture,

water activity and pH of the

samples. The proliferation rate of

the bacterial colony decreased, and

basically kept stable 15 days after


The studies on microbial properties

of relevant cured meat products

show that the naturally air-dried

products are accompanied by microbial

fermentation during the long

air-drying process. Although microbial

fermentation has little impact

on the pH of western-style fermented

meat products, it plays a

very important role in the formation

of the special flavor of the products.

Specifically,microflora including

micrococcus, can promote proteolysis

and lipolysis during the airdrying

and fermentation process of

the products, and facilitate decomposition

and formation of flavor

amino acid and flavor compounds.

The screening test results of micro-



Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017


Save fermentation of aspeciality

Source: WEI et al. FLEISCHWIRTSCHAFT international 3_2017

Fig. 6: pH tendency chart during the process

bial strains obtained by WEI et al.

(2004) show that the suitable strains

meeting China’s consumption

habits include Staphylococcus

carnosus, Pediococcus pentosaceus,

Staphylococcus xylosus and other

composite strains among commercially

microbial fermentation

strains frequently used in fermented

meat products. Especially

Staphylococcus carnosus and Staphylococcus

xylosus are extremely important

to promote the special flavor

formation of the products as much

as possible without greatly reducing

pH. Therefore, Bactoferm SM-194

(mixed strain of Staphylococcus

carnosus, Staphylococcus xylosus,

Lactobacillus sakei, Pediococcus

pentosaceus and Debaromyces

hansenii)was used for the study.

The results showed that the strains

from the starter culture became the

dominant micorflora in the produc

during the processing time.

Free amino acids

There was no significant difference

in total protein contents between

the two groups, and the contents of

total amino acid and free amino acid

of group S(with starter culture)

were obviously higher than those of

group D(without starter culture).

The contents of glutamic acid,

valine, methionine, tyrosine,

phenylalanine, histidine, arginine

and proline significantly increased.

Specific flavors (e.g., flavor taste,

sweet taste and bitter taste) are

produced due to function of free

amino acids and avariety of flavor

receptors. The delicate flavour

amino acids included asp and glu.

The contents of asp and glu of

samples in group Swere higher

than those in group D, respectively

360.03 mg and 303.94 mg per 100g,

and there was asignificant difference

between them. The amino

acids with sweet taste included thr,

ser and gly.Their total contents in

group Dwere slightly different from

those in group S, respectively

201.54 mg and 197.27 mg per 100g.

The amino acids in bitter taste

included his, ile, val, leu, tyr,arg,

met and phe. Their contents in

group Sand in group Dwere

548.20 mg and 430.78 mg per 100g

respectively.There was asignificant

difference between them. Contents

of the essential amino acids were

596.70 mg/100g in group Sand

485.38 mg/100g in group D. Contents

of the non-essential amino

acids were 1006.89 mg/100g in

group Sand 871.84 mg/100g in

group D. They were significantly


Free amino acid is aproduct

obtained after proteolysis and the

important source for formation of

flavor compounds. The experimental

results show that the amino

acids with delicate flavor in group S

were obviously higher than those in

group D, representing the improving

action of the added starter

culture on the flavor of the product,

specifically on the delicate flavor.

The studies on the fermented meat

products reveal that dynamic contents

of nitrite and free amino acids

show areverse change trend, which

is related to the strong inhibition of

nitrite on reducing bacteria. It is

concluded that the added microbial

starter culture strengthens the

growth and metabolic activity of

microbes in the internal environment

while reducing the content of

nitrite, thus producing plenty of free

amino acids (specifically flavor

amino acid) and giving amore

delicious taste to the product.

Volatile flavor


The analysis of volatile flavor compounds

in the product shows that

totally 48 compounds were detected

in group Dand group S, including

four hydrocarbons, eight ketones,

eight alcohols, twelve aldehydes,

twelve acids, one furan, one sulfur

compound and one pyrazine. The

total content of the volatile compounds

in group Swas 94.45%,

which was higher than that in

group D(81.87%). There were

35 volatile compounds in group D,

including sulfur substance (sulfur

dioxide) and there were 32 volatile

compounds in group S. In group S,

aldehydes had the highest content

which was 38.76%. The content of

acids was 31.65%, which was obviously

higher than the content of

acid substances in group D. The

content of hydrocarbons was obviously

higher than that of samples in

group D. The contents of ketones,

alcohols, aldehydes, furan and

pyrazine were significantly different.

In comparison with atraditional

process, the detection results of

flavor compounds show that the

number of types of flavor com-

Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017



pounds in the experimental group

increased by more than 26%, and

the number of types of hydrocarbons

was more than that of acids.

As aresult, the addition of starter

cultures was good for improving the

flavor quality of the cured rabbit

meat. Obviously,the results are

consistent with the previous studies,

which showed that rich protease

and lipase produced from microbes

added by starter cultures in fermented

meat products decompose

large molecular protein and lipid

into small molecular amino acid

easily digested by human body,and

form aldehyde, ketone and other

substances, thus facilitating the

improvement of the flavor of the


The microbial properties of the

Chinese-style cured meat products

shows that the naturally air-dried

and fermented products have afew

Lactobacilli, mainly including

Neisseria, Micrococcus and Staphylococcus,

which play an important

role in the formation of aspecial

flavor of cured meat products.

Neisseria is more known as adisease-causing

germ and is therefore

classified as undesirable.


The study compared atraditionally

processed product in property indexes

with the application of the

microbial starter culture Bactoferm

SM-194and the simulation of airdried

and fermented cured rabbit

meat with automated equipment.

The physical and chemical analysis

results showed that there was no

significant difference in moisture

and aw-value. The pH-value of the

experimental group with starter

culture was lower but the final

pH-value of the finished product was

within the acceptable range of cured

meat products. The contents of

nitrite, N-dimethylnitrosamine,

N-diethylnitrosamine and histamine

were 110.75 µg, 2.23 µg, 21.50 µgand

26.25 µgper kg in the experimental

group respectively,and 158.37 µg,

4.92 µg, 52.15 µgand 42.12 µgper kg

in the traditional processing group

respectively,representing that the

addition of the starter culture can

reduce the contents of nitrite, nitrosamines

substance and histamine,

and can be good for promoting

the safety of the product.

No pathogenic bacteria was

detected from the microbial results

of the product, thus indicating that

the product was safe. There was a

difference between the total microbial

contents of Micrococcus and

Lactobacillus, the contents were

6.33×10 6 Cfu/g and 8.25×10 6 Cfu/g

in the new process group respectively,which

were much higher than

1.37×10 5 Cfu/g and 4.25×10 5 Cfu/g

in the control group. The contents

of Micrococcus and Lactobacillus

promoting flavor were obviously

higher.The addition of such two

microbes, specifically Micrococcus,

may play an important role in the

formation of the special flavor of the

product. The determination and

comparison of flavor amino acids

and volatile flavor components

show that the content of total protein

had no difference, and the total

amino acid in the experimental

group was 1357.22 g/100g, which

was obviously higher than

1603.59 g/100g in the control group.

The flavoring amino acids, essential

amino acids content and the type of

flavor compounds in the experimental

group were 18.13%, 22.89%

and 16.05% higher than those in the

control group, and the difference in

the hydrocarbon substance and acid

substance was significant.

It is the inevitable development

direction to use modern technology

to transform the traditional processing

mode so as to promote the

quality of meat products and guarantee

the safety.This study further

proves that the technology with

starter culture reduces harmful

substance residues possibly existing

in traditional meat products,

and promotes the formation of the

flavoring amino acids and violate

flavor compounds so as to improve

the flavor.Asaresult, further discussion

is required in this area.


The entire bibliography can be requested

either from the corresponding

authors or the editors office.

Author’s addresses

Prof. Dr.Wang Wei, Professsor and Director

(corresponding author for inquiries in

Chinese: wangwei8619@163.com) and Dr.

Zhang Jiaming, Central Laboratory for Meat

Processing of the Province Sichuan,

Chengdu University, 610106Chengdu,

Sichuan, China; Jürgen Schwing (corresponding

author for inquiries in German:

dejsg@chr-hansen.com), Chr.Hansen GmbH,

Giessener Straße 94, 35415 Pohlheim,


Vemag Maschinenbau

Premium quality for salamis

The Total Vacuum System TVS149,

designed by Vemag Maschinenbau

GmbH from Verden, Germany, is an

addition to the complete HPE filling

machine series. The filling machines

fitted with the vacuum

hopper work in continuous operation,

since the vacuum is always

present in the hopper –two separatelycontrolled

vacuum plants

ensure the correct intake of the

material to be filled.

When the filling hopper is empty,

processing stops and the hopper

needs to be refilled. This discontinuous

process costs time. Time

that affects productivity.Not so

with the vacuum hopper; this

benefits from coordinated vacuum

provided via two separate, controllable

„vacuum circuits“.

Afilling level sensor registers

the filling level and feeds the

hopper completelyautomatically

through the optional feed hopper

as soon as the filling level has

The system is an addition to the

complete HPE machine series.

dropped below the specified limit.

Thus the filling rate remains constant

for uninterrupted production

and guarantees an optimum


The company’smodule system

applies here since one product fits

to the other.All HPE standard filling

machines are available for the

Total Vacuum System TVS149.



Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017

Industry News

Meat Cracks

Solution for sodium reduction

The sodium-rich diet of the

present society and the resulting

health risks, such as high blood

pressure, osteoporosis or kidney

diseases are ahot topic. The

recommended intake of the WHO of

5gsalt per day is significantly

exceeded with the average intake

of 8to12gin Europe. Around 70 to

80% of the salt is consumed

through processed foods, such as

baked goods, ready meals, processed

meat and sausages. However,

sodium chloride is one of the

most important ingredients in the

meat industry; particularlyinthe

form of nitrite curing salt. It is

impossible to imagine products

without it, due to the flavour enhancing

properties, the preservative

effect and the color forming


Against this background, the

company Meat Cracks Technologie

GmbH from Steinfeld-Mühlen,

Germany, has developed innovative

The LowSalt system allows a

sodium reduction by 25%.

solutions for asafe and simple

reduction of sodium in meat products

such as raw sausage, cooked

and raw cured products and boiled

sausages. With the use of mineral

salts and by using the synergies of

seasoning components and their

enhancing effect on the salty

flavour, areduction of the sodium

content by 25% can be achieved.



Highest quality for the production

The variety-specific coloration, the

grain and aclear cut are the key

criteria of apremium dry sausage.

Maschinenfabrik Seydelmann KG

from Stuttgart, Germany, offers

ideal solutions for various applications

for the production of dry


Seydelmann universal grinders

guarantee aclear cut and ahigh

throughput regardless of the raw

material. Via the six stepless

speeds of the working worm and

the four stepless speeds of the

feeding worm, the optimal speed

can always be programmed for

each consistency of the raw material.

Fresh, pre-cutted and deeply

frozen blocks can be reduced to

the desired grain size. No modifications

on the machine or the cutting

set are necessary for the processing

of different raw materials.

Therefore, ahigh degree of flexibility

is guaranteed independentlyof

the different raw materials. This

The high efficiency cutter

produces best product quality.

flexibility contributes to increasing

the efficiency of the production,

especiallyinthe face of the price

volatility for the raw material. The

loss by unfreezing of the product

blocks can be avoided. With Seydelmann

mixers and mixer-grinders

the ground material can be mixed

smoothlywithout squeezing the



Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017



Energy-efficient vacuum supply

Energy efficiency is the main topic

of Dr.-Ing. K. Busch’sGmbH from

Maulburg, Germany.Busch Vacuum

Pumps and Systems has taken on

the challenge of developing and

implementing highlyenergy-efficient

vacuum solutions. These

enable customers in all industrial

sectors to save energy and operating

costs, and therefore to operate

more economically.

Economical and safe vacuum

supplyisanissue that is becoming

increasinglyimportant for all areas

of industry when considering ways

Acentralized vacuum supplyachieves energy savings. to make production processes

more economical, while taking

energy savings and cost reductions

into consideration. It is important

to look at the complete production process in order to reduce the energy requirement

and operating costs. Focussing exclusivelyonavacuum pump's energy requirement is not

sufficient. The vacuum pump's heat emissions or cooling method and its installation location

or control make asignificant difference to the overall energy balance. Busch therefore offers

various options for heat recovery or improving the demand-based control of vacuum pumps.

As well as manufacturing energy-efficient vacuum pumps for various technologies, Busch

also designs central vacuum systems that are tailor-made to suit the particular requirements

of individual customers. This sort of centralization of vacuum supplyoffers several advantages.

It means that fewer vacuum pumps are required than in adecentralized vacuum supply.

In combination with demand-based control, this makes significant energy savings possible.


Industry News


Multi-touch functionality for food

With the S21WP, an industrial PC with proven quality and ruggedness, combined with the latest

technology and sleek design, Noax Technologies AG from Ebersberg, Germany, is one of the

proven leaders in the development and production of industrial computers. Anoticeable feature

is the rugged housing made of finelypolished stainless steel, combined with anew robust

touchscreen made of hardened safety glass. Users will be impressed with the 16:9 full-HD displays,

and the PCAP touch technology that can be used with gloves. Universal application guaranteed

thanks to acomprehensive

range of on-board interfaces.

The S21WP, full proprietary

development by the company,

is available in IP65 or

IP69K protection rating.

The S21WPfeatures ahighperformance

motherboard and

innovative PCAP touchscreen

technology.The display boasts

a21-inch full-HD display in 16:9

formats with non-reflecting,

hardened glass front without

gaps or joints. The fully-sealed

housing of the new S21WPis

made of finelypolished V2A

stainless steel and offers an

attractive appearance.

The unit stands up even against high-pressure washdowns.



Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017

Industry News


Innovation guarantees quality control

GEA from Duesseldorf, Germany,

kicks off anew era in quality control

with the GEA OxyCheck, the

world’sfirst in-line measurement

system that checks the oxygen

content and seal integrity of every

single food product packaged in

modified atmosphere. What makes

this innovative is that each MAP

OxyCheck is the world’sfirst non-invasive oxygen measurement system for MAP.

pack (MAP =Modified Atmosphere

Packaging) is non-invasivelyinspected

after sealing on athermoformer

instead of having to be

damaged by aneedle as was general

practice up until this point.

This makes costlyspot checks

obsolete, films and seals remain

intact and there is no loss of product

or materials. More than half of

all retail fresh food –meat, fish,

poultry, fruits and vegetables,

confectionery and baked goods as

well as dairy products –ispackaged

in amodified atmosphere.

During this process, agas mixture

of carbon dioxide and nitrogen is

injected into apackage prior to

sealing. This slows down decay,

thus extending the shelf life of the

packaged product. Asmall percentage

of oxygen remains in the

package by virtue of the process,

but this may not exceed athreshold

to avoid earlyspoilage of the

goods. OxyCheck carries out the

important task of monitoring the

residual oxygen content directly

during production on the PowerPak


The technology uses asensor

spot made of apolystyrene-based

fluorescent dye that is printed on

the inside of the film. Similar to an

indicator strip, the wavelength of

the dye changes depending upon

the oxygen content inside the

package. Sensors on the PowerPak

thermoformer activate this sensor

spot and then take areading. GEA

has developed aspecial method for

calculating the oxygen concentration

based on the light emitted and

the temperature. The new measurement

system has no effect on

either the line speed or the

throughput of the PowerPak. Up

until now, spot checks have been

carried out to measure the oxygen

content in MAP –which means that

less than 0.5% of the packs manufactured

are typicallytested. Spot

checks involve the removal of

packs from the line and their inspection

through an invasive

probe. When apack does not meet

specifications, the line is halted

and all packs preceding it up to the

last pass are destroyed. In contrast,

the OxyCheck process is

completelynon-invasive and neither

the product nor the packaging

materials go to waste.



Solutions for single households

Anew development by Sealpac GmbH from Oldenburg, Germany, concerns

the use of two-compartment skin trays, where each compartment is

sealed individually. Sealing takes place by means of Sealpac’sunique

OnTrayCut system, which was specificallydeveloped for skin applications.

This guarantees an immaculate presentation at retail, both from avisual

and tactile point of view. Due to the perforation between the compartments,

each portion can easilybeseparated from the other.Ifdesired, the

EasyPeelPoint can be added to allow for easy opening of the skin pack.

With this new tray, the company addresses the growing demand for efficient

packaging of smaller portions of food, mainlycoming from the increasing

number of single households.

Another novelity is FlatSkin. Here, instead of the common plastic tray, a

printed cardboard carrier is used that has been coated with apolymeric

protective layer.After use, the layer is easilyremoved from the carrier to

allow for separate disposal. As FlatSkin uses ahigh degree of recyclable

materials, the system convinces from an ecological point of view.



Making sausages easily

The new Skind Easy technology by

Indasia Gewürzwerk from Georgsmarienhütte,

Gemany, makes it

easy to encase sausages in hydrocolloid

casings at alow investment

cost with no need for coextrusion


The high prices of natural skins,

create challenges in acostconscious

market, which is why

alginate casing systems have

become increasinglypopular.

Such systems are now commonly

used in many countries, especially

where ethnic and religious requirements

play arole. Many

producers remain wary of alginate

casings due to the high investment

costs associated with earlier

systems that required co-extrusion

equipment. Those systems

consist of two vats each with its

own extrusion tube, acalcium

bath, and ameat hanger.While

the sausage meat is extruded

through one tube, the second vat

extrudes the alginate, enclosing

the meat filling. It then passes

into the calcium bath for fixing.

Ahighlyfunctional hydrocolloid

system is added to the meat


Skind Easy simplifies this process

considerably, since the highly

functional hydrocolloid system is

added to the meat filling as it is

extruded, eliminating the need for

two extrusion tubes. The alginate

skin is created with just avat, a

calcium bath, and ameat hanger.

The complex hydrocolloid system

has the high resistance to salts

and phosphates necessary to

make this process possible.


Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017




12 –14July

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Turkey, Istanbul




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ISSN 0179-2415

Research and



46 Irem Omurtag Korkmaz, Erkan Rayaman, Pervin Rayaman

and Ümran Soyoğul Gürer

Microbiological quality and portion analyses of döner sandwiches –

Investigations on beef and chicken döner sandwiches sold in Istanbul

50 Artur Rybarczyk, Aleksandra Łupkowska, Beata Hartuna

and Anna Sulerzyckat

Effect of pre-slaughter fasting and gender on pork quality

49, 54 Research News


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Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017

Research &Development

Microbiological quality and

portion analyses of döner sandwiches

Investigations on beef and chicken döner sandwiches sold in Istanbul

By Irem Omurtag Korkmaz, Erkan Rayaman, Pervin Rayaman and Ümran Soyoğul Gürer

In this study,35chicken and 40 beef döner sandwiches were collected

from Istanbul, and microbiological quality of meat component and portion

sizes of the samples were analyzed. Mean TAC(Total Aerobic Count)

results obtained were 6.99 ±1.5 logand 6.80 ±1.7 log cfu/g for beef and

chicken döner,respectively. Enterococcus was most frequently isolated

from the beef (72.5%) and chicken (27%) döner with amean of 3.26 ±

0.87 log and 3.34 ±0.94 log cfu/g, respectively. Escherichia coli were

isolated from 25% of beef (2.97 ±0.6 log) and 34.2% of chicken (2.98 ±

0.6 log) döner samples. Out of 75 döner meat samples, Staphylococcus

aureus was isolated from 21% (2.9 ±1.04log), Bacillus cereus from 2.6%

(1.8±0.14 log), and Clostridium perfringens from 2.6% (3.15 ±0.1 log) of

samples. Listeria monocytogenes was isolated from one beef döner sample.

No Campylobacter and Salmonella spp. were detected. The amount of

meat and salad served was 38.7–122.6 gand 8.81–125.2 g, respectively.

Excluding one sample contaminated with L. monocytogenes, the microbiological

quality of the collected samples was generally within the satisfactory

limits. However,taking into consideration the risk due to nonstandardized

heat treatment and unequal meat and salad portion sizes

between different buffets, the quantity regulations for döner sandwiches

remain necessary.

Döner kebab is awell-known Turkish dish that is so-called “street food

delicacy”inmany countries (NEDEA et al., 2011). Traditionally,meat

cuts are set on askewer and grilled, rotating the meat in front of aheat

source (KILIC,2009). Cooked and sliced meat is usually served in bread,

with salad, fried potatoes, or yogurt sauces, depending on the country or

the consumers’ choice. Due to the mode of preparation, food poisoning

related to döner kebab consumption is still apublic health issue in several

countries (BAUMGARTNER et al., 2011).

Confirmed outbreaks connected with döner kebab additionally support

the perceived potential risk associated with the consumption of this product

(CURRIE ET al., 2007; EVANS et al., 2000). Pathogens are mainly isolated

either from undercooked döner meat or from components of döner sandwich

cross-contaminated with raw meat (MATT and MANN,2014). Possible

pathogens, especially those that produce heat-stable toxins (e.g. Staphylococcus

aureus), can develop in the meat cone, or inside the cross-contaminated

salads or sauces leftopen (CEBIRBAY and NIZAMLIOGLU,2010;

WILLIAMSON et al., 2006). Some of the most common bacteria found in

different countries are Escherichia coli O157:H7, Salmonella spp., Staphylococcus

aureus, Clostridium perfringens, Citrobacter freundii,which is resistant

to several antibiotics (AL-MUTAIRI,2011; HOSSEINI et al., 2013;NIMRI

et al., 2014), and Listeria monocytogenes (EL-SHENAWY et al., 2011;OMURTAG

et al., 2013).

Beside the challenges in the management of hygienic quality of this

product, surveys show that the meat component served in bread varies

between countries (BAUER,2006; OMURTAG et al., 2012). Amount of meat

consumed in aportion is not only important due to its nutritional value

but also for the case scenarios in predictive microbiology.Inother words

the portion size effects the amount of pathogens consumed in aportion.

Therefore proper portion size has an importance on reducing the risk of

exposure. During the harmonization process with European Union (EU),

criteria in the Turkish Food Codex (TFC) were adapted to EU food safety

regulations, with more effective key standards. In addition to the microbiological

criteria, the meat served in adöner portion is also defined in TFC

(90 g; TFC, 2011b).

Transmission route investigations were particularly focused on the

possibilities of cross-contamination and the consumption of undercooked

meat (MATT and MANN,2014;TORRES et al., 2012). Especially chicken

döner took attention due to its high frequency of contamination compared

with other types of meat (NIMRI et al., 2014). From that point of view,the

purpose of this study was to investigate the microbiological quality of

chicken and beef döner kebabs and the retail portions sold in crowded

places of Istanbul, and consider the risk of exposure to bacterial


Materials and methods

Sampling plan

Istanbul is atranscontinental city,with settlements on both sides of the

Bosporus (the Asian and the European sides). Atotal of 75 cooked döner

kebab in the ready to eat (RTE) portions were collected, from the European

and Asian side of the city.Sampling was performed during August 2014,

in the period around 12–14 hours,Mondays through Fridays. Chicken

(n= 35) and beef döner kebabs (n= 40), consisting of meat, salad and other

items inside ahalf loaf of bread (one loaf of bread is 250 g) were bought

(TFC, 2012a). All the samples were transported to the laboratory in a

refrigerated box, and immediately analyzed. Same sampling and analysing

procedure was two times repeated.

Microbiological and portion analyses

All components were weighed separately under appropriately hygienic

conditions and the amount of meat and salad in aretail portions noticed

for each sample. 25 gofeach sample was transferred to stomacher filter

bags and 225 ml of enrichment solutions were added (1:10 ratio). Afterwards,

samples were homogenized in stomacher bags and tenfold serial

dilutions were prepared with Maximum Recovery Diluent (Oxoid

CM0733). 0.1mlofsamples from appropriate dilutions were spread onto

Total Aerobic Count (TAC) and selective agar plates for enumeration. The

media used in the isolations of different bacteria are shown in Table 1.

Log 10 transformations were applied to all counts and statistical analyses

were conducted using MS Excel. Apossible relationship between the

microflora found in the chicken and beef döners, and their weight were

analyzed using t-test. P5 log cfu/g were obtained in 92.5% of beef and 74% of

chicken döner samples. In the studies conducted by BOSTAN et al. (2011),

HAMPIKYAN et al. (2008), and KAYISOGLU et al. (2003) in döner samples in

Received: 25 October 2016 |reviewed: 2November 2016 |revised: 2November 2016 |accepted: 2November 2016


Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017


Research &Development


Tab. 1: Investigated bacteria and their isolation and identification procedures

Investigated Media Incubation Reference



Plate Count Agar

30 °C, 48 h (ISO 4833:2003, 2003)

(Oxoid CM0325)

E.coli Coli ID agar (BioMeriéux 42017) 42 °C, 24 h (OMURTAG et al., 2012)

Coliforms Coli ID agar (BioMeriéux 42017) 42 °C, 24 h (OMURTAG et al., 2012)



37 °C, 48 h (OMURTAG et al., 2012)

Bacillus spp.

Salmonella spp.

Clostridium spp.

Listeria spp.



Baird-Parker Agar (Merck

Nr.1.05406) with egg yolk

(Merck Nr.1.03784)

ID 32 Staph (BioMeriéux)

Bacara agar (BioMeriéux)

API 50 CHB/E (Biomerieux)

Buffered Peptone Water

(Oxoid CM0509)

MSRV motility agar

(Oxoid CM0910)

XLD-agar (Merck Nr.1.05287)

API 20 E(BioMeriéux)

TSC agar (Merck Nr.111972)

API 20 A, rapid ID 32 A

Fraser Broth Base

(Oxoid CM0895), Fraser Listeria

selective supplement (Merck

Nr.1.00093), Ammonium-ferric

(III)-citrate (Merck 3762)

ALOA Agar (BioMeriéux)

API Listeria (BioMeriéux)

Bolton Broth (Oxoid CM0983,

with supplement

Oxoid SR0208E)

m-CCDA (Oxoid CM0739, with

supplement Oxoid SR0155E)

API Campy (Biomerieux)

Istanbul, TACvalues ranged from 1log to 6log cfu/g. Although high

TACresults do not necessarily mean acertain danger to human health,

they might reflect the hygiene of RTE food items. Hence, in Egypt, samples

contaminated by L. monocytogenes also showed high TAClevels

(EL-SHENAWY et al., 2011).

Enterococcus was most frequently isolated from the beef and chicken

döner with maximum levels of 4.57 log and 5.1log cfu/g. Mean results of

other bacteria in beef and chicken döner samples were as follows: Escherichia

coli (2.97±0.6 log, 2.98±0.6 log), Staphylococcus aureus

(2.73±1.04 log, 3.24±1.06 log), B. cereus (1.80±0.14 log in beef only) and

Clostridium perfringerns (3.15±0.21log in chicken only), respectively (Tab. 2).

Studies investigating the cooked döner report variable results, depending

on the country of investigation. In accordance with the studies conducted

in Turkey by BOSTAN et al. (2011)and ERGÖNÜL et al. (2015), Escherichia

coli was the bacterial strain most frequently isolated in this study,

both from RTE beef (34.2%) and chicken (25%) döner samples. However

higher levels of contamination were obtained in the study of ÖKSÜZTEPE

and BEYAZGÜL (2014)with 45% chicken and 35% beef döner samples. In

Italy,the reported level of Escherichia coli contamination was lower (between

1log and 1.30 log cfu/g; ZIINO et al., 2013), whereas the frequency of

Escherichia coli (28.3%) in Jordan (NIMRI et al., 2014)was in accordance

with the results of this study,and in Iran, in 12.5% of beef döner samples,

the presence of Escherichia coli O157:H7 was confirmed (HOSSEINI et al.,

2013). According to the NewSouth Wales

Food Authority (NSW) guideline for microbiological

quality of RTE foods, the food

contamination levels were found “unsatisfactory”(>10

2 cfu/g) in 26% of Escherichia

coli positive samples analyzed in the study

(NSWFA, 2009).

In this study the frequency of contamination

of Staphylococcus aureus was found in a

ratio of 2:1, beef to chicken döner samples.

“Unacceptable limit”was set for Staphylococcus

aureus at ≥10 4 cfu/g by GILBERT et al.

(GILBERT et al., 2000), which was surpassed

in only one study conducted by Cebirbay

and NIZAMLIOGLU (2010), in Turkey.Inour

study,80% of samples did not exceed this

limit. Additionally,considering the acceptable

limits of Staphylococcus aureus, we


found that beef döner samples were more

(OMURTAG et al., 2012)

likely to be contaminated than chicken

döner samples. Hence, the total number of

pathogens present in chicken döner samples

was smaller than the number of

pathogens detected in the beef döner samples

(Tab. 2).


This study reports for the first time the


presence of the B. cereus in Istanbul. However,inthe

analyses conducted in other

cities of Turkey,the reported frequency of B.

cereus was higher than the authors determined,

with 28% and 100% of samples

being contaminated (ELMALI et al., 2005;

VAZGEÇER et al., 2004). TFC sets the limit of

B. cereus at 10 3 cfu/g (TFC, 2011a), whereas

(OMURTAG et al., 2012)

the Public Health Laboratory Service

(PHLS) guidelines suggest ≥5 log as potentially

hazardous, and 0.05). We

suggest that it would be useful to monitor these pathogens in salad

components found in döner shops as well, so that the necessary crosscontamination

observations can be made. This is in accordance with the

fact that Salmonella sp. and Campylobacter sp. were isolated not only

from döner meat samples, but also from salad components and dressings

in döner shops in UK (MELDRUM et al., 2008) and Austria (MATT

and MANN,2014).

37 °C, 24 h (THEPAUT and SORIANO,

2012; TALLENT et al.,

37 °C, 24 h

42 °C, 24 h

37 °C, 24 h

37 °C, 24 h


37 °C, 37 h (OMURTAG et al., 2012)

42 °C, 48 h,


Source: OMURTAG et al. FLEISCHWIRTSCHAFT international 3_2017

Portion sizes

The weight of meat components ranged from 38.7 gto122.6 g, with a

mean of 60.5 ±15.5 g. Achicken döner sample weighed the most (122.6 g),

while the lowest weight measured was of abeef döner sample (38.7 g).

Salad component weights ranged from 8.81gto 125.2 g, with amean of

36.8 ±17.2 g. We found that median weight of the served meat portions



Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017

Research &Development

Microbiological quality and portion analyses of döner sandwiches sold in Istanbul


Tab. 2: Microbial results of chicken and beef döner analyses, with regard to the range of

their detection rates

Range of log cfu/g

Bacteria B/C*

Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017


Research &Development

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and the Health Protection Agency.–20. NEDEA,P.S., M. ANDREIN and I. POP (2011):

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(Anale. Seria Ştiinţe Economice. Timişoara) XVII/2011,349357.–21. NIMRI,L., F.A.

AL-DAHAB and R. BATCHOUN (2014): Foodborne bacterial pathogens recovered from

contaminated shawarma meat in northern Jordan. JInfect Dev Ctries 8, 1407–1414.

doi:10.3855/jidc.4368. –22. New South Wales Food Authorıty (NSWFA) (2009):

Microbiological quality guide for ready-to-eat foods. NSW/FA/CP028/0906. –

23. OMURTAG,I., F.J.M. SMULDERS,F.HILBERT and P. PAULSEN (2012): Microbiological

condition of chicken doner kebab sold in Vienna, Austria. Arch Lebensmittelhyg 63,

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Authors’ addresses

Irem Omurtag Korkmaz (Corresponding author; irem.omurtag@marmara.edu.tr), Assist. Prof. Dr.,

Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Faculty of Health Sciences, Marmara University, Başıbüyük

yolu, 34854, Istanbul, Turkey; Erkan Rayaman, Assist. Prof. Dr., Pervin Rayaman, Assist. Prof. Dr.and

Ümran Soyoğul Gürer, Prof. Dr., Department of Pharmaceutical Microbiology, Faculty of Pharmacy,

Marmara University, Tıbbiye Cd., 34668, Istanbul, Turkey.


New project looks at portable detection equipment

The IAEA has launched aproject

to enable countries to quickly

detect food fraud and contamination

with the help of low-cost,

portable tools.

The coordinated research

project, run in cooperation with the

Food and Agriculture Organization

of the United Nations (FAO), brings

together scientists from 13 countries

to explore opportunities

created by advances in fielddeployable

analytical equipment.

Fraud is estimated to cost the

global food industry between

$10 bn. and $15 bn. every year,

affecting around 10%ofall

commercially-sold food products,

according to the United

States-based Grocery Manufacturers


“The development of high performance

hand-held computing

devices, such as smart phones,

has enabled anew generation of

instruments that can be used

outside the traditional laboratory

environment,” said Iain Darby, head

of the IAEA’sNuclear Science and

Instrumentation Laboratory.

Ion mobility spectrometry, a

nuclear-based technology used

by border police in the detection

of illicit drugs and explosives, is

one of several methods that could

be adapted to perform point-ofuse

screening tests to check for

IAEA carries out programmes to maximize the contribution of nuclear technology.

Photo: IAEA

adulterants, contaminants and

mould in food.

The project will develop methods

for using such hand-held devices

to test food authenticity, including

guidelines for analyses and a

comprehensive database of authentic

reference samples –a

critical requirement for reliable

assessments of food provenance

and composition.

Participating countries are

Austria, Belgium, China, India,

Malaysia, Morocco, Russian Federation,

Singapore, Sri Lanka, Sweden,

United Kingdom, Uganda and

the United States. The project

kicked off with ameeting in Vienna

in May, and first results are expected

within the next two years.

While professional research

laboratories have the ability to

detect different types of fraud and

contamination in food relatively

quickly, such capacity is often

limited in many countries.

The project will initiallyfocus on

devising methods to quicklyanalyse

milk powder and vegetable oil,

two commodities that are particularlyvulnerable

to adulteration. For

example, “gutter oil” –waste

cooking vegetable oil that is recovered

and recycled back into the

food chain –has raised alarm in

several countries.

Food adulteration can pose a

significant danger to public health,

and the loss of public confidence

in food products can lead to international

trade bans and severe

economic damage.

The project is benefitting from

two portable spectrometer machines

purchased thanks to a

contribution from Germany to help

modernize the Agency’snuclear

sciences and applications laboratories.

The IAEA, jointlywith FAO, helps

its Member States use nuclear and

related techniques for sciencebased

solutions to improve global

food security and sustainable

agricultural development.

The International Atomic Energy

Agency (IAEA) serves as the world's

foremost intergovernmental forum

for scientific and technical cooperation

in the peaceful use of

nuclear technology.Established as

an autonomous organization under

the United Nations (UN) in 1957, the

IAEA carries out programmes to

maximize the useful contribution of

nuclear technology to society

while verifying its peaceful use.




Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017

Research &Development

Effect of pre-slaughter fasting

and gender on pork quality

By Artur Rybarczyk, Aleksandra Łupkowska, Beata Hartuna and Anna Sulerzycka

The aim of this study was to determine the effect of pre-slaughter fasting

on the meat quality of both genders of offspring of Duroc boars at approximately

the same pre-slaughter lairage time. The carcasses of the

pigs subjected to longer pre-slaughter fasting (24 compared to 18 hours)

had better technological meat quality with asimilar weight and muscle

percentage, as evidenced by significantly higher pH, lower electrical

conductivity (EC), lower drip loss from fresh and thawed meat, lower

lightness (L*) and increased redness (a*). The length of pre-slaughter

fasting had no effect on the sensory traits nor the shear force of the meat.

Differences between sexes were visible in the higher lightness (L*) and

yellowness (b*) of the longissimus lumborum muscle of barrows compared

to gilts with similar muscle content and basic chemical composition.

The authors observed no interactions between the length of preslaughter

fasting of finishers and their sex that had an effect on the

quality of the meat.

Feed deprivation before transporting pigs (i.e. pre-slaughter fasting) is

used mainlytoreduce the risk of death during transport, especiallyin

hot weather (TARRANT,1993;WARRISS,1994; BRADSHAW et al., 1996), to improve

the quality of the meat, and also to avoid the risk of bacterial

contamination from gut contents during evisceration (MICKWITZ VON et al.,

1982; EIKELENBOOM et al., 1991;GISPERT et al., 1996; EILERT,1997).

The length of time since the final feeding before slaughter is crucial

for the concentration of pre-slaughter muscle glycogen and the incidence

of post mortem PSE meat (pale, soft, exudative) (TARRANT,1989;

EIKELENBOOM et al., 1991).Longer pre-slaughter fasting lowers post mortem

levels of muscle glycogen and lactic acid (DE SMET et al., 1996), resulting

Lean meat content

Tab. 1: Hot carcass weight and percentage lean meat determined by AutoFom

Traits Time of fasting Gender Interaction

18 h 24h Barrows Gilts

Hot carcass 85.63±2.39 85.41 ±2.74 85.85 ±2.35 85.20±2.73 n.s.

weight (kg)

Lean meat in 56.63±1.98 57.35±2.07 56.71±1.98 57.25±2.09 n.s.

carcass (%)

Lean meat in 59.88±1.99 60.34 ±2.17 59.87±2.03 60.34 ±2.13 n.s.

ham (%)

Lean meat in 53.55±2.77 54.36±3.00 53.50±2.91 54.39 ±2.86 n.s.

loin (%)

Lean meat in 57.36±1.48 57.80±1.67 57.43±1.57 57.73±1.60 n.s.

shoulder (%)

Lean meat in


52.91 ±2.31 53.25±2.51 52.69±2.37 53.45±2.39 n.s.

n.s.: not significant at P≤0.05 and P≤0.01.

Source: RYBARCZYK et al. FLEISCHWIRTSCHAFT international 3_2017


» Pigs

» Feed withdrawal

» Physico-chemical traits

» Sensory properties

in ahigher pH, improved water holding capacity and darker meat (JONES et

al., 1985; RYBARCZYK et al., 2007). However, extended fasting may also lead

to an increased aggression in pigs and fights for dominance, particularly

between pigs from different farms (MURRAY et al., 2001).This may result in

adeficiency of glycogen, which increases the incidence of DFD meat

(dark, firm, dry) (WARRISS,1982;FISCHER et al., 1988; EIKELENBOOM et al., 1991;

WITTMANN et al., 1994).

In many countries, a12–15 hfasting prior to slaughter is acommon

practice, aiming to reduce the risk of microbiological contamination

during slaughter and to limit deviations from the desired level of meat

quality (EIKELENBOOM et al., 1991;BAGER et al., 1995). However, studies by

GUÀRDIA et al. (2004) and RYBARCZYK et al. (2007) suggest that the deprivation

of feed before slaughter for aperiod less than 18 hincreases

the risk of PSE, while more than 22 hmay increase the incidence of

DFD as aresult of adepletion of muscle

glycogen (EIKELENBOOM et al., 1991; GISPERT et

al., 2000; GUÀRDIA et al., 2005). Significantly,

some authors (MURRAY et al., 2001; BEATTIE

et al., 2002; MORROW et al., 2002) report a

small or negligible impact of fasting time

before slaughter on meat quality.These

discrepancies can be explained by differences

in the level of stress or activity

imposed on the pigs before slaughter, e.g.

mixing animals from different suppliers,

and the conditions of road transport

(LEHESKA et al., 2002; BERTOL et al., 2005;

FAUCITANO et al., 2006). Research by FAUCI-

TANO et al. (2010)indicated that a24-hour

period between the last feed and the

slaughter of the animals seems to be

optimal for carcass yield and good meat

quality and safety.

Therefore, the aim of this study was to

determine the effect of the duration of

pre-slaughter fasting (18 and 24 h) on the

technological and sensory quality of meat

from Duroc boar offspring, taking into account

the gender of the pigs.

Received: 30 September 2016 |reviewed:18October 2016 |revised:25October 2016 |accepted: 25 October 2016



Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017


Materials and methods


An examination was carried out on 120hybrid

pigs in winter season, procured from a

pig production farm in the Pomeranian

Voivodeship (Poland). The study involved

the offspring of Duroc boars and Danbred

sows (Landrace-Yorkshire) which were

housed under the same environmental

conditions and fed using abalanced feed

mixture ad libitum.

After reaching aweight of around

110kg, the sample group of pigs were

divided into two groups of 60 individuals

each (equal share of gilts and barrows).

The groups differed in the duration of

fasting at the farm, i.e. 1hand 7h,providing

total fasting times before slaughter of 18 hand 24 h, respectively.

After loading the pigs onto the truck, which took 40 min, the

animals were transported to an abattoir located 110kmaway (travel

time of the transport 1h50 min). The average temperature during

transport was 22 o C. After unloading the truck, which took 30 min, the

pigs spent the next 14 hinlairage, where the average temperature

was 15 o C.

Slaughter value and meat quality

After stunning the pigs (Butina CO2 gas stunning system, Denmark), lean

meat percentage in the carcass, the ham, loin, shoulder and belly, were

non-invasivelymeasured ultrasonically(AutoFom, SFK Technology,

Denmark). Hot carcass weight was determined.

At slaughter line, the authors selected equal numbers of carcasses

from each group of pigs (n= 30) with similar warm weight (85 ±5 kg)

and share of gilts and barrows. 35 min after slaughter, pH was measured

using aportable CP-411 pH-meter (Elmetron, Poland). Next, the

carcasses were progressivelychilled for 24 h. At first they were

cooled at atemperature of +1 o Cfor 7–8 h, and then after filling the

store, the carcasses were cooled at atemperature between –3 o C

and –4 o Cfor 6–7 h, and then at 4–6 o Cfor the rest of the time (about

10 h).

During carcass chilling, 3hand 24 h post mortem (p.m.), pH was

again measured in the longissimus lumborum (LL) muscle. At 2hand

24 hp.m., electrical conductivity (EC2 and EC24)was measured using an

LF-Star (Ingenieurbüro Matthäus,Germany). At those times, pH and EC

Physico-chemical data

Tab. 3: Physico-chemical traits of the LL and SM muscle

Traits Time of fasting Gender Interaction

18 h 24h Barrows Gilts

pH35min 6.33 ±0.20 6.40 ±0.19 6.36±0.20 6.38 ±0.20 n.s.

pH3 5.92 b ±0.22 6.04 a ±0.22 5.95±0.25 6.02 ±0.20 n.s.

pH24 5.59 ±0.10 5.63 ±0.14 5.59±0.11 5.63±0.13 n.s.

pH24 SM 5.48 B ±0.14 5.68 A ±0.17 5.56±0.16 5.60±0.21 n.s.

pH48 5.59 ±0.11 5.61 ±0.17 5.58 ±0.14 5.62±0.14 n.s.

pH96 5.52 B ±0.09 5.64 A ±0.13 5.58±0.12 5.58±0.14 n.s.

EC2 (mS/cm) 4.66 ±1.72 4.18 ±1.36 4.27±1.66 4.57±1.46 n.s.

EC24 (mS/cm) 5.60 a ±1.62 4.65 b ±1.64 5.22±1.98 5.03 ±1.36 n.s.

Drip loss24 (%) 3.13 A ±1.02 2.26 B ±1.18 2.79±1.11 2.60 ±1.25 n.s.

Drip loss72 (%) 6.19 A ±1.63 4.68 B ±1.96 5.77±1.78 5.10 ±2.07 n.s.






Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017

Research &Development

Effect of pre-slaughter fasting and gender on pork quality

Water loss

Tab. 4: Water loss measurements during thawing and cooking of LL muscle

Traits Time of fasting Gender Interaction

18 h 24h Barrows Gilts

Thawed loss (%) 7.60 a ±2.71 6.23 b ±2.23 6.83 ±2.55 7.01±2.60 n.s.

Cooked loss (%) 26.29 ±3.03 27.25 ±2.48 27.05±2.54 26.49±3.03 n.s.

Total fluid loss (%) 31.94 ±2.54 31.76 ±3.36 32.05±2.54 31.65±3.36 n.s.




Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017


Research &Development

In the present study, there were no

significant differences in sensory traits of

the longissimus lumborum muscle with

respect to the length of fasting (Tab. 6),

which is in line with the results of PARTANEN

et al. (2007) for finishers fasting for 25 h

and 41 hbefore slaughter.

In this research on the offspring of Duroc

boars, the authors found no difference in

muscle percentage in the whole carcass

and individual body parts between the

genders of the finishers with similar body

weight. This lack of correlation with sex is

not consistent with other reports, where

gilts have ahigher carcass value than

barrows (BARTON-GADE,1987; CISNEROS et al.,

1996). In terms of meat quality, the authors

noted asignificant effect of gender on

lightness (L*) and yellowness (b*) of the

meat, both 24 hand 48 h post mortem.

Barrows had asignificantlyhigher lightness

(L*) and yellowness (b*) of the LL muscle compared to gilts, with asimilar

pH, drip loss and basic chemical composition. However, the majority

of studies do not confirm the influence of gender on meat quality characteristics

(CISNEROS et al., 1996; ELLIS et al., 1996), the reported differences

mainlyconcern lightness (L*) and intramuscular fat content,

being higher in barrows than gilts (LATORRE et al., 2003). In the evaluation

of eating quality, the heat-treated meat of barrows received higher

scores onlyincolor.The results of other studies also show alower effect

of sex on the sensory traits and shear force of the meat at 0%, 25% and

50% respectivelyinDuroc pigs (CHANNON et al., 2004).



This study was conducted on finishers with the same lairage time, similar

carcass weight and muscle content, and demonstrated that the pigs

subjected to alonger pre-slaughter fasting (24 to 18 h) had better technological

quality of the meat as evidenced by asignificantlyhigher pH,

lower electrical conductivity (EC), lower drip loss in fresh and thawed

meat, lower lightness (L*) and increased redness (a*), with alower dry

matter content.

There was no observable effect of pre-slaughter fasting time on the

sensory characteristics of the meat and shear force. Differences between

sexes were onlyobserved in ahigher lightness (L*) and yellowness

(b*) of the longissimus lumborum muscle in the carcasses of the

barrows than the gilts with similar muscle content and basic chemical

composition of the meat.


1-AOAC (Association of Official Analytical Chemists) (2003): 17th Ed., Revision 2,

AOAC International, Gaithersburg, USA. –2.BAGER,F., H.D. EMBORG,S.L. LUND,C.

HALGAARD and J.P.THODE (1995): Control of Salmonella in Danish pork. Fleischwirtsch.

75, 1000–1001. –3.BARTON-GADE,P.A. (1987): Meat and fat quality in boars, castrates

and gilts. Livest. Prod. Sci. 16,187–196. –4.BEATTIE,V.E., M.S. BURROWS,B.W. MOSS and

R.N. WEATHERUP (2002): The effect of food deprivation prior to slaughter on performance,

behavior and meat quality.Meat Sci. 62, 413–418.–5.BERTOL,T.M., M. ELLIS,

M.J. RITTER and F.K. MCKEITH (2005): Effect of feed withdrawal and handling intensity

on longissimus muscle glycolytic capacity and blood measurements in slaughter

weight pigs. J. Anim. Sci. 83, 1536–1542. –6.BRADSHAW,R.H., R.F. PARROTI,J.A. GOODE,

D.M. LLOYD,R.G. RODWAY and D.M. BROOM (1996): Behavioral and hormonal responses of

pigs during transport: effect of mixing and duration of journey.Anim. Sci. 62,

547–554. –7.CHANNON,H.A., M.G. KERR and P.J. WALKER (2004): Effect of Duroc content,

sex and ageing period on meat and eating quality attributes of pork loin. Meat


Tab. 6: Sensory assessment of the LL muscle

Traits Time of fasting Gender Interaction

18 h 24h Barrows Gilts

Color c 4.71 ±0.18 4.79±0.18 4.81 A ±0.17 4.68 B ±0.18 n.s.

Aroma d 4.88±0.11 4.80±0.16 4.83 ±0.15 4.85 ±0.14 n.s.

Tenderness e 4.19 ±0.54 4.17 ±0.51 4.19 ±0.54 4.17 ±0.51 n.s.

Juiciness f 3.87±0.58 4.00±0.49 3.91 ±0.53 3.96 ±0.55 n.s.

Flavor g 4.18±0.51 4.20±0.48 4.16 ±0.54 4.21 ±0.45 n.s.

Shear force (kg) 4.67±0.68 4.61 ±0.72 4.57 ±0.61 4.71 ±0.77 n.s.

A, B



Fleischwirtschaft international 3_2017

Research &Development

KARAMUCKI and M. JAKUBOWSKA (2007): Effects of feed withdrawal on meat quality in

PEN AR LANhybrid pigs. Anim. Sci. (Proc. 1),122–123. –28. TARRANT,P.V. (1989): The

effects of handling, transport, slaughter and chilling on meat quality and yield in

pigs. in: Manipulating Pig Production II. Proc. Biennial Conf. Australian Pig Sci.

Assoc. Warribee, Victoria, Australia, 1–25. –29. TARRANT,P.V. (1993): An overview of

production, slaughter and processing factors that effect pork quality.in: Pork

Quality: Genetic and Metabolic Factors. CAB International, Wallingford, UK, 1–21. –

30. WARRISS,P.D. (1982): Loss of carcass weight, liver weight and liver glycogen, and

the effects on muscle glycogen and ultimate pH in pigs fasted pre-slaughter.J.

Sci. Food Agr.33, 840–846. –31. WARRISS,P.D. (1994): Ante-mortem handling of pigs.

in: Principles of Pig Science. Nottingham University Press, Nottingham, UK,

425–432. –32. WITTMANN,W., P. ECOLAN,P.LEVASSEUR and X. FERNANDEZ (1994): Fastinginduced

glycogen depletion in different fibre types of red and white pig musclesrelationship

with ultimate pH. J. Sci. Food Agr.66, 257–266.

Authors' address

Dr.habil. Artur Rybarczyk (corresponding author: artur.rybarczyk@zut.edu.pl), M.Sc. Aleksandra

Łupkowska, M.Sc. Beata Hartuna and M.Sc. Anna Sulerzycka, Department of Food Commodity

Sciences, Faculty of Biotechnology and Animal Husbandry, Piastów 45, 70-310,West Pomeranian

University of Technology in Szczecin, Poland.


BfR expands coop with ILRI

The Federal Institute for Risk Assessment

(BfR) in Germany has

expanded its cooperation with the

International Livestock Research

Institute (ILRI).

The ILRI has been investigating

diseases of livestock in developing

countries for more than 20 years to

improve food safety and antimicrobial

resistance. It develops diagnostic

products and vaccines

designed to boost productivity of

livestock species and maintain

genetic diversity.

Funding for scientific research

comes from entities such as Germany's

Federal Ministry for Economic

Cooperation and Development


Dr.Andreas Hensel, BfR president,

said the EU is the world's

second largest importer of food.

"Promoting the production of safe

food in the countries of origin

therefore not onlybenefits people

in Africa but also and directly

people in Europe." he said.

Other areas of cooperation

include authenticity of feed and

food, identification of food-associated

bacteria, parasites and

Germany’sFederal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR) is located in Berlin.

Photo: BfR

viruses and typing of pathogens

with the help of genome sequencing.

Meanwhile, athree year project

of the BfR and the University of

Kaiserslautern funded by the

German Research Foundation (DFG)

will investigate the toxic potency

of individual food-relevant

pyrrolizidine alkaloids (PAs). Researchers

will do in vitro trials to

analyse the metabolic pathway of

individual PAswhile determining

the toxic effect of the various

metabolized PAs. The aim is to

have astructure-effect relationship

as abasis for predicting

harmfulness of the different PAsor

PA groups.

PAsare secondary plant constituents

found in flowering plants

such as the Asteraceae or Boraginaceae

family. In high concentrations,

PAsdamage the liver and are

suspected of acting as genotoxic

carcinogens. They can be present

as contaminants honey, some tea

varieties and herbal teas or in feed

like green fodder or hay.



Australia overhauls scheme

Meat &Livestock Australia (MLA)

has integrated its red meat and

livestock quality assurance programs

in abid to improve them for

the “future prosperity of the red

meat and livestock industry”.

The Integrity Systems Company

will deliver the Livestock Production

Assurance (LPA) program,

National Vendor Declarations (NVDs)

and the National Livestock Identification

System (NLIS). The new

streamlined structure is designed

to help ensure resources are more


Welfare insights of pregnant animals

EFSA experts have examined issues

surrounding the slaughter of

pregnant farmed animals in Europe.

The European Food Safety Authority’s(EFSA)

Panel on Animal

Health and Welfare first assessed

whether and when livestock fetuses

of different animal species

experience pain. The scientists

agreed that the animals don’tin

the first two thirds of gestation

because the relevant physical and

neurological structures develop

onlyduring the last part of gestation.

The experts estimated the

probability that fetuses experience

pain during the final third of gestation.

They concluded that the most

probable scenario is that they

don’tdue to the presence of a

series of inhibitory mechanisms in

the body of the fetus.

The opinion proposes practical

measures for reducing the number

of pregnant animals slaughtered.

According to EFSA expert judgement,

on average 3% of dairy

cows, 1.5%ofbeef cattle, 0.5% of

pigs, 0.8% of sheep and 0.2% of

goats in the EU are slaughtered

effectivelydirected. This follows a

recommendation by industry and

government in 2015 that one company

be given responsibility for

delivering afullyintegrated integrity

system. The LPAprogram

provides evidence of livestock

history and on-farm practices,

while the NVD provides the mechanism

for the transfer of information

and the NLIS gives full traceability

through the value chain.


Experts have examined the

slaughter of pregnant farmed

animals in Europe.

Photo: PETTER /pixelio.de

during the last third of gestation.

Reasons may vary –from farmers

not being aware that animals are

pregnant, to considerations linked

to animal health and welfare or

economic reasons.


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