Microbiological characteristics of frozen beef during storage

  • V. Salata
Keywords: meat, beef, freezing, storage, safety, microflora, MAFAnM, Enterobacteriaceae, psychrotrophy, fungi and yeast


During storage, meat and meat products are exposed to environmental factors, which leads to undesirable changes for the consumer, which are in the chemical composition of the product. Most often changes occur due to the action of enzymes of microorganisms. The purpose of the work was to investigate the microflora of frozen beef at different storage temperatures. Sampling of meat and meat products was carried out in accordance with GOST 7269. Microbiological investigations of meat and meat products were conducted in accordance with GOST 21237 and EU Commission Regulation №2073/2005. Meat storage was carried out in accordance with DSTU 4426 and DSTU 6030.

It has been established that during storage of beef frozen at -12 °С for 8 months there is a decrease in almost the entire microflora on the surface, except for mushrooms and yeast. Thus, the number of MAFAnM (mesophilic aerobic facultative anaerobic microorganisms) in flushing with half a dozen beef was reduced by 7.9 times (P ≤ 0.05), psychrotrophic bacteria and golden staphylococci – by 1.6 times (P ≤ 0.05), enterococci – by 8.2 times (P ≤ 0.05). The most harmful temperature -12 °C affects the bacteria of the Enterobacteriaceae family - their content decreased by 16.2 times and amounted to 2.1 ± 0.1 × 101 CFU/cm3 from the surface. At the same time, the number of fungi and yeast on the surface of the frozen for 8 months of beef increased by 1.9 times (P ≤ 0.05). Consequently, the results of studies indicate that at the temperature of storage -12 °С the most slowly die psychrotrophic microorganisms, and the number of fungi and yeast even increases. This indicates that when storing at such a temperature it is necessary to pay attention to the initial number of fungal and psychrotrophic microflora.

During storage of frozen beef at -20 °С for 14 months there is a decrease in the microflora on the surface of the meat. Thus, the number of MAFAnM in the washings from the half a beef decreased by 9.4 times (P ≤ 0.05), the psychrotrophic microorganisms by 1.7 times (Р ≤ 0.05), enterococci – by 8.8 times (Р ≤ 0.05). The bacteria content of the genus Enterobacteriaceae was decreased by 20 times. Mushrooms and yeast at this temperature were not multiplied and their number is remained at one level. Consequently, the temperature of freezing -20 °C is more detrimental to the microflora of meat, compared with the temperature -12 °C.

When storing meat in a frozen state at a temperature of -25 °C for 18 months, the microbiological processes are practically similar in nature, as at -20 °C for 14 months. That is, microbiological studies indicate that for prolonged storage of beef for longer than 12 months. you can limit the temperature to -20 °C. This will reduce the cost of electricity consumed to lower the temperature to -25 °C. In addition, the frozen to -25 °C meat will be longer than the defrosting process, compared to that frozen to -20 °C.



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How to Cite
Salata, V. (2017). Microbiological characteristics of frozen beef during storage. Scientific Messenger of LNU of Veterinary Medicine and Biotechnologies. Series: Veterinary Sciences, 19(82), 25-29. https://doi.org/10.15421/nvlvet8206