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Beef Stick Firmness

Situation

Beef stick bite toughness testingA large manufacturer of beef sticks and beef jerky items was looking for a quantifiable, consistent way to measure and ultimately better control the texture of their product. Current methods involved simple visual inspections and very subjective human sensory evaluation.

The manufacturer had received consumer complaints that some of the beef sticks were too chewy when bitten into. The manufacturer needed to develop a baseline or “standard” for their “ideal” product so that they could compare other products (i.e. too chewy) to it. Before our test, they used sensory analysis alone to determine the bite strength of the product, however, they wanted a method to quantify the data and visualize the difference in the flavors and also difference in an ideal sample and a not ideal sample. A consistent and repeatable method of measuring and therefore controlling the texture is essential.

 

Method

Beef stick firmness results graphAll testing was done using a TMS-Pro with a 250N Load cell and a shear blade fixture, of notched Warrner-Bratzler design - an industry-standar for the evaluation of the toughness of meat products. The chart at the bottom exhibits the data collected from running samples of 4 different beef stick products. The graph demonstrates noticeable difference between the 4 flavors. After running many reps on each flavor, the manufacturer could get a “standard” or baseline for that particular flavor. Then, they can compare that number (peak force) to a product that is considered “too chewy”.

 

Significance

  • Quick and easy test that gives repeatable, objective results that are nearly real time with the processing
  • Client will now have a quantifiable way to show differences texture caused by formulation variations

Trusted by customers across the world

As a Meat Scientist and program leader for the University of Nevada, Reno, I need to ensure that equipment I use in my lab is reliable, durable, versatile, and accurate. For texture analysis of meats, there are many systems available in the market. Over the last 15 years of my career, I¹ve worked with many of them and had great and bad experiences with different brands.

Last year, I decided to try a different system for my lab, the TMS-Pro Texture Analyzer from Food Technology Corporation. The system has all the attributes I was expecting to conduct texture and shear force analysis in a quick and not complicated way. The customer support provided by them is outstanding and their technicians are always ready to walk me through new procedures and initial set up. If you are looking for a reliable system for food texture analysis and special customer service, the TMS-Pro is the system to go for and the Food Technology Corporation is the one that can deliver the support.

Amilton de Mello
Assistant Professor of Agriculture, Meat Science and Food Safety
https://www.unr.edu/anvs

I have been using the TMS-Pro mechanical tester in our undergraduate biological materials property course for the past 3 years. The simple setup and operation of the TMS-Pro allows my students to focus on learning the theoretical underpinnings of mechanical properties instead of fighting with a finicky test system.

An added bonus is working with Shirl and his amazing team at Food Technology Corporation. They respond almost immediately to questions and inquiries and are always friendly and helpful. 

Jennifer (Melander) Keshwani, Ph.D. University of Nebraska-Lincoln
http://www.unl.edu/

My first contact with FTC was through buying texture analyzer equipment as my area of interest is Rheology. We faced a problem operating the appliance. The company tried hard to help us through the internet, but the University thought it was better to send me to the company branch located in England. I received a highly advanced training course for 10 days free of charge. They provided me with programs that operate the equipment along with the information needed.

It was a great effort and outstanding support. I would like to thank Shirl Lakeway and FTC for providing me with this opportunity and for his continuous help. Finally, I encourage researchers who are interested in the physical properties of foods and dairy to choose FTC as it is a respectable and dependable company and offers the best deals concerning prices and training with different languages, such as Arabic for the Middle East.

Professor Hoda El-Zeini, Dairy Science and Agriculture University - Cairo, Egypt
Professor
https://cu.edu.eg