We studied the chilling rate of hot-boned beef required to control bacterial growth during storage and display. Hot-boned cuts were chilled to 21 C by 3, 5, 9, and 12 h after their removal from the carcass. Cuts were vacuum-stored at 2.2 C for 14 or 21 d, then displayed at 2.2 C for 3 days under natural fluorescent lighting. Initial bacterial loads of hot-boned cuts were low (Log 0–3 CFU/cm2). Conventionally chilled beef (48 h at 2.2 C) and hot-boned cuts chilled to 21 C by 3, 5, and 9 h had lower bacterial counts and more desirable color and odor than hot-boned cuts chilled slower (12 h to 21 C). In general, indicator organisms and potential pathogens (coliforms, fecal coliforms, coagulase-positive Staphylococcus aureus, Clostridium perfringens, and fecal streptococci) were more numerous for cuts with slower chilling rates (9 and 12 h to 21 C) than for cuts chilled faster (3 and 5 h to 21 C and conventionally chilled beet). No Salmonella were detected. Hot-boned beef cuts are in good bacteriological condition (no potential health hazards) for storage if chilled to 21 C in 3 to 9 h.

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Author notes

1Contribution No. 81-124-j, Kansas Agricultural Experiment Station, Manhattan 66506. Portions of this paper were presented at the International Symposium on Recent Advances in Food Science and Technology, January 9–11, 1980, Taipei, Republic of China.