TUCKER, Ga. – USPOULTRY and the USPOUTLRY Foundation announce the completion of a Clemson Univ. research project on blast freezing of poultry products. The research, conducted by Dr. Paul Dawson, determined the survival rates of E. coli and Salmonella on the surface of poultry products after exposure to blast freezing, were the same following blast or crust freezing. Shelf life, color and tenderness of the tested poultry were also unaffected by blast freezing, according to test results.

The research is part of the association’s comprehensive research program examining all phases of poultry and egg production and processing.

In summary, Salmonella and E. coli bacteria were injected into raw chicken breast and allowed to harbor in the meat. The chicken breast was then exposed to surface (crust) freezing. Live cells were recovered from the blast frozen meat and compared with bacteria found on meat that was only refrigerated or completely frozen. Because bacteria in processing plants are often exposed to low temperatures, both cold-shocked and normal temperature bacteria were injected into samples.

Results showed that no differences were found between cold-shocked or non-shocked bacteria on products that were crust or completely frozen. Crust freezing did not result in a significant reduction in bacteria counts compared with fresh and completely frozen treatments.

In addition, crust freezing did not increase shelf life or effect color and tenderness of raw chicken breast.

A complete report, along with information on other association research, can be found on USPOULTRY’s website: www.uspoultry.org.