Vascular perfusion chilling of red meat carcasses - A feasibility study

T Brown, RI Richardson, C-A Wilkin, JA Evans

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Meat carcasses must be chilled to below 7 _C before leaving the slaughterhouse. Typically this is done by passing cold air over the surfaces of eviscerated and de-hided carcasses. This surface cooling can take many hours to reduce centre temperatures to below 7 _C. In vascular perfusion chilling (VPC), a cold fluid is circulated through the intact vascular system, offering significant reductions in cooling time. This paper describes a small feasibility study to evaluate vascular perfusion techniques for rapid chilling of lamb carcasses using a proprietary Flo-iceTM system. This produces pumpable ice slurries containing very fine ice particles, suitable for circulating through vascular systems. VPC was found to be capable of rapid initial reduction of carcass temperatures in comparison with air chilling (mean times to 20 _C in deep legs were reduced from 2.6 to 1.3 h, which was significantly different at P <0.05). In all cases however, uptake of perfusate into the carcasses occurred. This limited the duration of the perfusion treatment and as a result restricted the period of enhanced cooling. Samples from carcasses treated with VPC were lighter (P <0.05, with mean measured L value increasing from 43.4 to 46.8) and more yellow (P <0.05, with mean measured b value increasing from 6.7 to 7.9) than samples from conventionally chilled carcasses, and had lower shear force values when cooked (P <0.05, with mean force reducing from 10.0 to 6.8 kg). This was most probably due to the added water in the meat. Microbial quality of the meat was not significantly affected by the perfusion treatments.
Translated title of the contributionVascular perfusion chilling of red meat carcasses - A feasibility study
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)666 - 671
Number of pages6
JournalMeat Science
Publication statusPublished - 2009

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