Low-Voltage Electrical Stimulation of Beef Carcasses Slows Carcass Chilling Rate and Improves Steak Color

Christina Bakker, Keith Underwood, Judson Kyle Grubbs, Amanda Blair
2021 Foods  
Electrical stimulation (ES) is used in beef slaughter plants to improve tenderness; however, varying levels of low-voltage ES have not been well characterized. The objective was to evaluate the influence of two levels of low-voltage ES on temperature decline, pH, glycolytic potential, and meat quality. Forty-two beef carcasses were chosen from a commercial packing facility. One side of each carcass received either 40 or 80 volts of ES for 60 s at 45 min postmortem. The paired side of each
more » ... side of each carcass did not receive ES (Control). Temperature loggers were placed in the sirloin of 12 carcasses to record temperature decline. Longissimus muscle pH was measured at 1, 12, and 24 h, and 3 d postmortem. Strip steaks were fabricated for determination of meat quality. A treatment by time interaction was observed for carcass temperature decline (p < 0.001) where ES sides stayed warmer longer than Control sides. A treatment by time interaction was observed for pH decline with Control sides exhibiting an increased pH at 1 h postmortem (p < 0.001). Instrumental color values were increased for ES compared to Control sides (p < 0.001). These results indicate ES slows carcass temperature decline, hastens initial pH decline, and improves instrumental color. Similar results were observed between the ES treatments indicating either ES level may be used to achieve similar quality characteristics.
doi:10.3390/foods10051065 pmid:34065955 fatcat:igfjgrmfyzg4nbuwoj7dzlbgpa