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CHECK-OFF FUNDED RESEARCH PRODUCES FACT SHEETS

Centennial, Colo., Feb. 7, 2008 – In this world of information overload where a Google search generates thousands of results, wouldn't it be nice to have all the requested information in one place, neatly packaged together and professionally presented?

That's exactly what the beef industry can find with the release of the latest checkoff-funded product enhancement topical literature reviews. Each review contains information from past research projects, historic data and a component of checkoff-funded research.

The newest fact sheets available are: Beef Packaging by Chance Brooks, Ph.D. – the functions and technology behind packaging techniques; Marinating of Beef for Enhancement by Brooks – refining marinating techniques, equipment and terminology; Color Changes in Cooked Beef by James R. Claus, Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Madison – beef color chemistry and cooking; Ranking of Beef Muscles for Tenderness by Chris R. Calkins, Ph.D. and Gary Sullivan, University of Nebraska – muscle structure and factors that influence tenderness; and Adding Enzymes to Improve Beef Tenderness by Calkins and Sullivan – methods to improve tenderness of middle meats and upgrade other cuts.

“Great strides have been made in the safety, taste and tenderness of our beef products. The checkoff-funded fact sheets are just one more way for the beef industry to package this information together in an effort to assist producers, processors and retailers with ways to improve product consistency,” says Paul Parker, vice chair of the Joint Industry Product Enhancement Committee. “By doing this, we're taking one more step toward ensuring a quality eating experience and ultimately aiming to increase beef demand.”

Highlights from the literature reviews include: Recent advances in case-ready packaging provide increased case-life as well as the opportunity for increased safety; the 2004 National Meat Case Study found that 16 percent of whole-muscle beef cuts in U.S. retail cases are enhanced; color alone is an unreliable way of assessing product doneness; tenderness and flavor are the most important palatability characteristics relating to consumer satisfaction with beef; and consumers will pay a premium for a guaranteed tender product.

For more information, or to view the full fact sheets, visit www.beefresearch.org and click on Product Enhancement Research Fact Sheets.

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