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Finding Compounds that Determine Lamb Flavour

28 August 2014

A study to determine the flavour of lamb found that it depends on the levels of volatiles fatty acids on the surface as well as other complex chemical compounds.

The Spanish study took a model to explain and predict lamb flavour from the aroma-active chemical compounds released upon grilling light lamb loins.

In the study by Mónica Bueno, M. Mar Campo, Juan Cacho, Vicente Ferreira and Ana Escudero the lamb flavour of 70 Rasa Aragonesa male lambs was studied.

The objective of the work was to understand the role of the different aroma compounds in the perception of the local “lamb flavour” concept.

The set of 70 loins (Longissimus dorsi) from approximately seventy day-old Rasa Aragonesa male lambs were grilled and the aroma-active chemicals released during the grilling process were trapped and analysed.

Carbonyl compounds that were derived from the process were gathered and determined by GC-NCI-MS, whereas other aromatic compounds were directly analysed by GC-GC-MS.

Odour activity values (OAVs) were calculated using their odour threshold values in air.

Lamb flavour could be satisfactory explained by a partial least-squares model (74 per cent explained variance in cross-validation) built by the odour activity values of 32 aroma-active chemical compounds.

The researchers said that the odour activity values were calculated to find the importance of the 32 compounds to lamb flavour.

The model demonstrated that the lamb flavour concept is the result of a complex balance.

Its intensity critically and positively depends to the levels of volatile fatty acids and several dimethylpyrazines while is negatively influenced by the different alkenals and alkadienals. (E,E)-2,4-decadienal and (E)-2-nonenal showed top odour activity values.

The study has been published in the journal Meat Science.

 

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August 2014

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