Guides and Resources

AMSA Guidelines for Meat Color Measurement (2023)

Meat color is an important aspect of a consumer’s purchase decisions regarding meat products. Perceived meat color results from the interaction of light, a detector (i.e., human eye), and numerous factors, both intrinsic and extrinsic to the muscle, that influence the chemical state of myoglobin. The complex nature of these interactions dictates that decisions regarding evaluations of meat color be made carefully and that investigators have a basic knowledge of the physical and chemical factors affecting their evaluations. These guidelines were compiled to aid investigators in navigating the pitfalls of meat color evaluation and ensure the reporting of information needed for the appropriate interpretation of the resulting data.The guidelines provide an overview of myoglobin chemistry, perceptions of meat color, details of instrumentation used in meat color evaluation, and step-by-step protocols of the most common laboratory techniques used in meat color research.By following these guidelines, results of meat color research may be more clearly presented and more easily replicated.

Meat Science Lexicon (2018)

The American Meat Science Association (AMSA) became aware of the need to develop a Meat Science Lexicon for the standardization of various terms used in meat sciences that have been adopted by researchers in allied fields, culinary arts, journalists, health professionals, nutritionists, regulatory authorities, and consumers. Two primary categories of terms were considered. The first regarding definitions of meat including related terms, e.g., “red” and “white” meat. The second regarding terms describing the processing of meat. In general, meat is defined as skeletal muscle and associated tissues derived from mammals as well as avian and aquatic species. The associated terms, especially “red” and “white” meat have been a continual source of confusion to classify meats for dietary recommendations, communicate nutrition policy, and provide medical advice, but were originally not intended for those purposes. In this paper, processed meat is defined in terms of the actions of processing, i.e., “minimal processing” and “further processing”; the main distinction being whether additional ingredients were included or excluded. Meat processing has become more complex as technologies have improved, and the official words to describe them have not remained current.

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