FOOD SCIENCE ›› 2021, Vol. 42 ›› Issue (21): 202-212.doi: 10.7506/spkx1002-6630-20200710-147

• Reviews • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Progress in Research on the Effect of Postmortem Aging on the Quality of Fresh Meat

LIU Zechao, LUO Xin, ZHANG Yimin, MAO Yanwei, DONG Pengcheng, ZHANG Wenhua, YANG Xiaoyin, LIANG Rongrong   

  1. (1. College of Food Science and Engineering, Shandong Agricultural University, Tai’an 271018, China; 2. National Beef Cattle Industrial Technology System, Zhongwei Station, Zhongwei 755000, China)
  • Online:2021-11-15 Published:2021-11-23

Abstract: Postmortem aging has been extensively applied as a value-added approach in the meat industry for many years all over the world. A series of biochemical changes that occur in the transformation of muscle to meat during the early postmortem period and those occurring during the subsequent aging process may have an important effect on meat quality. Therefore, developing the optimal postharvest aging strategy and introducing some innovative technologies in postmortem aging is particularly important for improving meat quality (especially tenderness). In recent years, understanding the postmortem physiological and biochemical mechanisms of muscle and pursuing breakthroughs in developing new aging techniques have been a hot spot in this field. However, a comprehensive review on the latest progress in this field is lacking. Hence, the physiological and biochemical changes in muscle during the early postmortem period that determine meat quality are summarized in this review article. Meanwhile, the effects of the currently available aging methods including dry and wet aging on meat quality are overviewed, and the development of new aging techniques and their effect in improving meat quality are discussed. This review is expected to provide theoretical and technical guidance and development ideas for meeting consumers’ increasing need for high-quality meat and promoting the development of the meat processing industry in China.

Key words: fresh meat; postmortem biochemical processes; dry aging; wet aging; meat quality; new aging techniques

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