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Point of purchase fatty acid profile, oxidative status and quality of vacuum-packaged grass fed Australian beef held chilled for up to 12 weeks

Holman, Benjamin W.B., Bailes, Kristy L., Kerr, Matthew J., Hopkins, David L.
Meat science 2019 pp. 107878
beef, beef quality, biomarkers, cold storage, docosahexaenoic acid, eicosapentaenoic acid, fatty acid composition, grasses, intramuscular fat, monounsaturated fatty acids, particle size, storage time, thiobarbituric acid-reactive substances, vacuum packaging, vitamin E
We investigated the fatty acid (FA) composition, oxidative biomarkers and quality traits of chilled beef. Specifically, striploin portions were held in vacuo and chilled (~ 1.5 °C) for up to 12 weeks, and analysed dependent on their assigned chilled storage period (0, 2, 5, 8, 10 and 12 weeks). There were no practical effects observed on beef FA composition as a result of chilled storage – including several polyunsaturated FA (PUFA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). Intramuscular fat content was found to have a covariate effect, but only for saturated FA and monounsaturated FA. Vitamin E and thiobarbituric acid reactive substances were unchanged. Furthermore, improvements to shear force and particle size were evident at 2 weeks and thereafter, no further variation was evident. These findings suggest that beef produced to be healthier based on the EPA, DHA and PUFA content will remain so, for up to 12 weeks. Likewise, beef quality will be preserved across this same period.