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Survey of commercial poultry processing units – colour variation and shelf life

National Research Centre On Meat
CRIDA Campus, Santoshnagar, P.O. Saidabad, Hyderabad-500 059


A survey of 200 broiler carcasses was conducted in local poultry processing units to determine the colour defects and related meat quality. Different colour problems in carcasses were observed and described as bruises (leg-6.15%, wing tips-3.07%), over scalding (10.76%), dislocation (femur-10.76%, wing-4.61%), petechae (7.69%). The pH, objective colour values (L*, a*, b*), water holding capacity (WHC %), cook loss %, microbial counts and sensory odour score were determined in bruised, unbruised and over scalded leg tissues stored at 1° C temperature at 3 days interval up to 9 days. The a* value (redness) was significantly more (P<0.05) in bruised (19.02) and over scalded (12.79) leg tissues as compared to unbruised tissue (5.87). The unbruised control was having higher (P<0.01) WHC% (36.44) than bruised (18.37) and over scalded (20.11) tissues. No significant difference was observed in aerobic plate counts or coliforms in all the leg tissues on 0 day. However, after 9 days, all the microbial counts increased and reached to 5 logs from initial 3 logs. At the end of storage period, the bruised and over scalded leg tissues giving spoiled odour with odour score 4.50 and 5.00 respectively, whereas the unbruised control was still acceptable after 9 days with odour score of 3.25. It is concluded that variation in broiler carcass colour exists in commercial poultry processing units of which mostly are over scalded and dislocated femurs with bruises. These defects are associated with inferior meat quality and negative impact to the purchasing behavior of consumers. Further, the shelf life of such defective meat is decreased and gets spoiled easily.

Source : IPSACON-2005
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