Natural cultures, to be applied on the surface of fresh pork, could help protect the sanitary quality of the meat. This is the subject of a study by the French Pork and Pig Institute (IFIP).
In spite of good hygiene practices and HACCP principles, meat surfaces tend to become contaminated by bacteria during processing steps. Economic losses due to alteration of the meat products can reach up to 10-15% of total production.
One of IFIP’s targets with this innovative study was to create a better knowledge of fresh meat ecosystems, in order to better control alterations of the meat during processing. The study consisted of identifying the initial bacterial populations in the meat and to measure the impact of additional cocktails of lactic bacteria on culture growth and undesirable bacteria.
After these trials, the three best performing cocktails were selected for a reproduction of the trial results. First encouraging results have to be completed by further studies to better know this complex and innovative technology. At the moment, its use is still confidential to the French meat industry.
• French Pork and Pig Institute (IFIP)