Potassium carbonate improves fresh pork quality characteristics.

Author(s) LeMaster, M.N.; Chauhan, S.S.; Wick, M.P.; Clark, D.L.; England, E.M.
Journal Meat Sci
Date Published 2019 Oct

Meat enhancement strategies like sodium tripolyphosphate (STP) are used to improve fresh meat quality attributes like color, water-holding capacity, and tenderness. However, alternatives are necessary because of reduced consumer acceptance of STP. One alternative is potassium carbonate (KCO). A study was conducted to evaluate KCO's impact on fresh, boneless, center-cut pork loins enhanced with one of five treatments: a negative control, positive control (0.3% STP), and three concentrations of KCO (0.1, 0.3, and 0.5%). Loins were cut into chops, stored under simulated retail display, and analyzed for color (L*, a*, b*), pH, cook loss, and tenderness. For each quality characteristic measured, the 0.3% and 0.5% KCO maintained redness (a*), decreased yellowness (b*), reduced cooking loss, and maintained tenderness compared to STP. SDS-PAGE analysis further determined that both KCO and STP extracted myosin heavy chain. Combined, these data suggest that KCO may function as an alternative to STP in the fresh pork industry provided microbial safety and shelf-life are appropriately controlled.

DOI 10.1016/j.meatsci.2019.05.019
ISSN 1873-4138
Citation Meat Sci. 2019;156:222230.

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