Frozen Storage

Freezing slows down any deterioration of the meat, but changes still occur. Color change (see earlier) and the onset of rancidity are slowed by low temperatures, although rancidity will continue once initiated. When meat freezes, it does so in such a way that extracellular ice crystals first form so that water moves out of the cells. Over time in frozen storage, recrystallization of ice occurs, and the ice so formed can cause structural damage. Fast freezing results in smaller ice crystals and less damage (122). In frozen storage, meat surfaces will sublime water unless pro-

Table 1. Composition of Lean Cooked Meat


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