Meat Science and Technology

Meat Science and Technology

SIXTH IMS LECTURE DELIVERED BY DR. NICOLA SIMMONS

The 2008 IMS Lecture for Meat Science and Technology was delivered at the 2008 International Conference of Meat Science and Technology (ICoMST) in Cape Town by Dr. Nicola Simmons of Carne Technologies Ltd., New Zealand. The subject of the lecture was “Reassessing the Principles of Electrical Stimulation”.

The mechanisms by which electrical stimulation (ES) of carcasses can be used to modulate meat quality are reviewed. Evidence to support an effect of ES on tenderness (and other meat quality attributes) based solely on changes in the pH/temperature profile within carcass muscles are presented.

The interactions between electrical parameters and the contraction responses of carcass muscles are described to provide generalised principles to guide the design of electrical stimulation technology. The commercial risks to meat quality of inappropriate use of electrical stimulation, particularly excessive stimulation to produce PSE-like conditions, are considered.