Effect of High-oxygen and Oxygen-free Modified Atmosphere Packaging on Spoilage Process of Poultry Breast Fillets

High-oxygen packaging offered no advantages over high-nitrogen packaging of chicken fillets in terms of meat quality or shelf life in this experiment in Germany.
calendar icon 23 January 2015
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A comparison was made by Sonja Rossaint and colleagues at the University of Bonn in Germany of the effect of atmospheres containing high oxygen (70 per cent oxygen and 30 per cent carbon dioxide) or high nitrogen (70 per cent nitrogen and 30 per cent carbon dioxide) on the spoilage process during storage of poultry fillets (at 4°C).

Their paper was published in Poultry Science.

Four samples of each gas atmosphere were analysed at seven sample points during storage.

For this analysis, the growth of typical spoilage organisms (Brochothrix thermosphacta, Pseudomonas spp., Enterobacteriaceae and Lactobacilli spp.) and total viable count (TVC) were analysed and modeled by using the Gompertz function.

Sensory analyses of the poultry samples were carried out by trained sensory panelists to analyse colour, odour, texture, drip loss and general appearance.

The composition of the spoilage flora differed between the oxygen-free atmosphere and the high-oxygen atmosphere. Anaerobic conditions favored the growth of Lactobacilli spp., whereas aerobic gas composition favoured the growth of B. thermosphacta. However, no significant difference (P<0.05) in TVC and sensory parameters were observed for poultry samples stored under a high-oxygen atmosphere in comparison to a high-nitrogen atmosphere.

These results indicate that high-oxygen packaging has no additional beneficial effect on the quality maintenance and shelf life of fresh poultry fillets, concluded Rossaint and co-authors.


Rossaint S., S. Klausmann and J. Kreyenschmidt. 2015. Effect of high-oxygen and oxygen-free modified atmosphere packaging on the spoilage process of poultry breast fillets. Poultry Science. 94 (1):93-103. doi: 10.3382/ps/peu001

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January 2015

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