Kemin debuts antimicrobial for ready-to-eat meat

Related tags Meat

Kemin has launched a new propionic acid-based antimicrobial ingredient for ready-to-eat meat applications.

The antimicrobial is designed to help control Listeria monocytogenes​, in addition to reducing microbial spoilage and extending the shelf life of ready-to-eat meat and poultry products.

Known as BactoCEASE, the new propionic acid-based ingredient is said to offer an alternative to lactate-based antimicrobials which have been shown to perform inconsistently in deli-style meats, says Kemin.

“Until now, meat manufacturers have only had one primary option for Listeria control — lactates,”​ said Dr William Schroeder, director of research and development for the food technologies division of Kemin.

Schroeder said the new BactoCEASE ingredient will provide a “cost-effective lactate alternative … that has scientifically sound research demonstrating excellent, more consistent performance in controlling Listeria in ready-to-eat RTE meat and poultry when compared to lactates.”

Propionic acid

Propionic acid occurs naturally in apples, strawberries, grains and cheese. It is used in food preservatives such as antimicrobials for bakery products as well as in the pharmaceutical sector and in solvents.

Propionic acid is also used in the tortilla industry – where it is considered a standard and highly effective antimicrobial.

Kemin said its new antimicrobial will control the growth of Listeria​ in meat and poultry products for up to 12 weeks, depending on applications.

Previous research has shown that lactates perform inconsistently in such applications, whilst multiple replications in turkey, ham and roast beef showed BactoCEASE consistently inhibiting Listeria for an average of 10-12 weeks, said Kemin.

Kemin added that the new ingredient not only performs more consistently than traditional lactates, but has ‘key benefits’ for manufacturers because of its ‘economical usage rate.’  

“It is applied at a lower application rate, meaning less ingredient cost per pound of meat produced, as well as a significant impact from an operational perspective.”

Kemin revealed that a petition has been submitted to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) requesting the amendment of 9 CFR 424.21(c) to list liquid sodium propionate as an acceptable antimicrobial agent for use in ready-to-eat meat and poultry products.

It said that once the commenting period is over and questions have been addressed, BactoCEASE can be used on all ready-to-eat meat and poultry products without an in-plant waiver.

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