Study of the Influence of Product and Process Variables in the Salting and Post-salting Stages of PSE Thawed Hams

Raul Grau 1 , William Albarracin 2 , Gonzalo Clemente 3 ,  and Jose Manuel Barat 4
  • 1 Universidad Politecnica de Valencia
  • 2 Universidad Politecnica de Valencia
  • 3 Universidad Politecnica de Valencia
  • 4 Universidad Politecnica de Valencia

The use of thawed raw material is becoming more frequent in the cured ham processing industry. At the same time, the incidence of PSE meat in the raw material can be very important. The aim of this work was to characterise the salting and post-salting stages of PSE thawed hams, and to study the influence of process and product variables on the results obtained in industry. A deeper knowledge of this influence could help reduce the variability in salt concentration obtained in the process. Findings indicate a strong influence of pH, total ham weight, Lean/Fat ratio and the contact area of the hams in the salting stage, while the post-salting time was the variable that exerted the greatest influence on the salt and water distribution inside the hams during this stage.

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IJFE is devoted to engineering disciplines related to processing foods. The areas of interest include heat, mass transfer and fluid flow in food processing; food microstructure development and characterization; application of artificial intelligence in food engineering research and in industry; food biotechnology; and mathematical modeling and software development for food processing purposes.