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Emulsifier Applications in Meat Products

  • M. Wes SchillingEmail author
Chapter

Abstract

Emulsified meat products include frankfurters, bologna, chicken nuggets, spreadable sausage, surimi, and other products in which salt-soluble, amphiphilic proteins, emulsify the lipid. Myosin and actomyosin are the predominant emulsifiers, largely due to their high concentration and amphiphilic nature. Myosin is present in pre-rigor meat and has greater emulsifying capacity than actomyosin. Salt, most often NaCl, solubilizes these meat proteins by increasing electrostatic repulsion, which allows the proteins to unfold and orient themselves to the lipid, non-polar phase and the aqueous liquid phase. Once lean meat tissue is chopped with salt and water, ground fat can be mixed with the lean meat, and the hydrophobic portions of the proteins orient themselves such that they form a protein film around the fat, which makes an oil in water emulsion. Most emulsions are heated in a smokehouse or other thermal process which stabilizes the emulsion through protein coagulation. Salt, phosphates, nitrite, dextrose, and binders are commonly used in emulsion products. Soy proteins have a similar structure to myofibrillar proteins in the meat and can therefore be used to make imitation meat emulsions. Soy protein, modified food starch, carrageenan, sodium caseinate, whey protein, and fiber can all be used to bind water and in some cases bind fat, which enhances emulsion stability. Though the science behind meat emulsions is well established, ingredient technology and product development continue to occur in order to produce clean label, reduced fat, and reduced sodium meat emulsion products.

Keywords

Emulsified meat products Myosin Actomyosin Salt Pre-rigor 

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Food Science, Nutrition and Health PromotionMississippi State UniversityMississippi StateUSA

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