Critical reviews in food science and nutrition

Meat shelf-life and extension using collagen/gelatin coatings: a review.

PMID 20694926


Different factors lead to the end of shelf-life for fresh meat products. The factors depend upon the animal including breed difference and muscle fiber type, external influences such as diet and stress, and post-harvest storage conditions including time, temperature, and packaging atmosphere. The characteristics that indicate the end of shelf-life for fresh meat products include water loss/purge accumulation, color deterioration due to myoglobin oxidation, rancidity due to lipid oxidation, and microbial spoilage. The characteristics can be measured and studied in the laboratory. Meat shelf-life is extended with the application of a surface coating because it provides a water and oxygen barrier. Collagen and gelatin coatings are used as a barrier on meat products to reduce purge, color deterioration, aroma deterioration, and spoilage, improve sensory scores, and act as an antioxidant.