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The effects of dietary quercetin supplementation on the meat quality and volatile profile of rabbit meat during chilled storage

North, Megan K., Zotte, Antonella Dalle, Hoffman, Louwrens C.
Meat science 2019 pp. 107905
alcohols, alkanes, antioxidant activity, cold storage, cold treatment, color, diet, discoloration, esters, lipid peroxidation, longissimus muscle, meat quality, microbiological quality, pH, quercetin, rabbit meat, rabbits, shelf life, slaughter, storage temperature, thiobarbituric acid-reactive substances, volatile compounds, weaning
Thirty-four New Zealand White rabbits of both sexes were fed a control or supplemented (2 g/kg quercetin dihydrate) diet from weaning until slaughter (13 weeks). After post-mortem chilling, excised and minced Longissimus thoracis et lumborum muscles were stored at 3.2 °C under oxygen-permeable wrapping for 1, 3 or 5 days. Colour, pH, lipid oxidation (TBARS), antioxidant capacity (FRAP), volatile profile (day 1 and 5) and microbial count (day 5) were determined. Quercetin reduced alkane (day 5) and hexanal (day 1) concentrations, but otherwise had minimal antioxidant effect, and did not benefit microbial quality, and thus did not substantially improve the shelf-life. The sex effect was similarly limited. Overall, the pH increased and FRAP decreased during storage, but TBARS did not change and discolouration seemed delayed. The volatile profile was dominated by esters, alcohols and heterocyclic compounds, and while it changed during storage, lipid oxidation products did not increase as expected, suggesting that rabbit meat may have relatively active reducing mechanisms.