Beef steaks are commonly displayed under high oxygen concentrations in modified atmosphere packs (MAP) in order to promote colour stability. Such conditions, however, may also cause quality deterioration through lipid oxidation and decreased tenderness. The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of oxygen concentration (0%, 10%, 20%, 50% and 80%) on the quality of MAP beef steaks (M. longissimus dorsi). Steaks were stored at 4°C for 15 days and tested for lipid and protein oxidation, heme iron, colour, oxymyoglobin concentration, tenderness and sensory acceptability (up to day 12) for the resulting cooked meat. Sensory panellists expressed a preference for steaks stored in packs containing 50% oxygen, despite detecting oxidised flavours under these conditions. This could be the result of adaptation to, or familiarity with, oxidised flavours by panellists.
University College Cork ->