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Assessing health risks posed by hazardous compounds generated through meat processing
04/02/2021 // Evangelyn Rodriguez // Views

In this study, Spanish researchers reviewed the generation of substances that could harm the health in different types of meat products during processing. Their report was published in the journal Food Science and Human Wellness.

  • Various types of meat processing results in the generation of substances of safety concern in meats.
  • These harmful compounds include:

    • N-nitrosamines, which can be generated under certain conditions when nitrite is used as a preservative
    • Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, which are generated as a consequence of smoking processes
    • Heterocyclic aromatic amines, which are generated under certain cooking conditions
    • Compounds released from the oxidation of lipids and proteins
    • Maillard reaction products like acrylamide and carboxymethyl lysine
    • Biogenic amines that can accumulate in fermented meats

  • Knowledge of these substances and their generation routes is important to health authorities and the meat industry because it facilitates the assessment of the safety of meat products.

With this knowledge, the researchers believe that it would be possible to assess and design alternatives that could reduce or even eliminate the presence of substances of concern in meat products, thus eliminating any risk to consumer safety. Some of the strategies they envision are focused on the control of precursor substances and generation routes, as well as the modification of meat formulations and processing conditions.

Read the full study at this link.

Journal Reference:

Flores M, Mora L, Reig M, Toldrá F. RISK ASSESSMENT OF CHEMICAL SUBSTANCES OF SAFETY CONCERN GENERATED IN PROCESSED MEATS. Food Science and Human Wellness. September 2019;8(3):244–251. DOI: 10.1016/j.fshw.2019.07.003



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