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Poultry Health & Disease / Poultry Welfare
on December 14, 2011

Poultry surface freezing not a significant reducer of bacteria

Study shows surface freezing no more effective than fresh or completely frozen treatments

Blast surface freezing of poultry meat does not result in a significant reduction in bacteria counts (such as Salmonella or E. coli) when compared to fresh or completely frozen treatments, according to research conducted at Clemson University.

Salmonella and E. coli bacteria were injected into raw chicken breast, allowed to attach, and then live cells were recovered after exposure to surface freezing for comparison with bacteria on meat that was only refrigerated or completely frozen. Since bacteria in processing plants are often exposed to low temperatures, both cold-shocked and normal temperature bacteria were injected into samples. No differences were found between cold-shocked or non-shocked bacteria on products that were surface or completely frozen, and surface freezing did not increase shelf life or affect color and tenderness of raw chicken breast.

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