Article

Vascular Rinsing and Chilling Carcasses Improves Meat Quality and Food Safety: A Review

Koeun Hwang, James Claus, Jong-Youn Jeong, Young-Hwa Hwang, Seon-Tea Joo*
Author Information & Copyright
1Meat Science & Animal Biologics Discovery, Department of Animal & Dairy Sciences, University of Wisconsin, Madison 53706, United States.
2School of Food Biotechnology & Nutrition, Kyungsung University, Busan 48434, Korea.
3Institute of Agriculture & Life Science, Gyeongsang National University, JINJU 52828, Korea.
4Division of Applied Life Science (BK21 Four), Gyeongsang National University, JINJU 52828, Korea.
*Corresponding Author: Seon-Tea Joo, E-mail: stjoo@gnu.ac.kr.

© Copyright 2022 Korean Society of Animal Science and Technology. This is an Open-Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/) which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Received: Mar 17, 2022; Revised: Apr 11, 2022; Accepted: Apr 12, 2022

Published Online: May 10, 2022

Abstract

Rinse &amp; Chill<sup>®</sup> technology (RCT) entails rinsing the vasculature using a chilled isotonic solution (3ºC; 98.5% water and a blend of dextrose, maltose, and sodium phosphates) to rinse out the residual blood from the carcass. Infusion of pre-chilled solutions into intact animal carcasses immediately upon exsanguination is advantageous in terms of lowering the internal muscle temperature and accelerating chilling. The primary purposes of the technology are to enhance blood removal, facilitate carcass chilling, and optimize pH decline, all of which enhance meat quality and safety. Although RCT solution contains some substrates, the pre-rigor muscle is still physiologically active at the time of early postmortem and vascular rinsing. Consequently, these substrates are fully metabolized by the muscle, leaving no detectable residues in meat. The technology has been commercially approved and in continuous use since 2000 in the United States and since 1997 in Australia. As of January 2022, 23 plants have implemented RCT among the 5 countries (Australia, US, Canada, New Zealand, Japan) that have evaluated and approved RCT. All plants are operating under sound Sanitation Standard Operation Procedures (SSOP) and a sound Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) program. No food safety issues have been reported associated with the use of this technology. Rinse &amp; Chill<sup>®</sup> technology has been adapted by the meat industry to improve product safety and meat quality while improving economic performance. Therefore, this review summarizes highlights of how RCT technically works on a variety of animal types (beef, bison, pork, and lamb).

Keywords: blood removal; carcass chilling method; meat color; food safety; vascular rinsing