Those of us who want to keep meat from spoiling for more than a few weeks have had limited options till now. We can cure it into bacon or sausage; freeze it or dry it; or buy it supermarket-"fresh" in a shrink-wrapped envelope. Now Daniel J. O'Sullivan, a professor at the U. of Minnesota, has a new solution that might keep a piece of meat fresh for years on the shelf.
Meat spoils in part because of the action of bacteria like E. coli and Lactobacillus. There has been some success in treating meat with an antibacterial compound known as nisin, which works against Gram-positive bacteria such as Lactobacillus, but not the Gram-negatives E. coli and Salmonella. Enter bisin. Bisin is a compound isolated from Bifidobacterium longum, a bacterium that occurs naturally in the human gut; its bactericidal properties extend to both Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria, and can be applied to meat and dairy products to keep them free from spoilage.
The discovery stands to have far-reaching effects; the inhibition of food spoilage stands to save lives around the world. But it's important to remember that the solution to the last decades' glut of foodborne illness outbreaks does not lie in raising meat as quickly and cheaply as possible, secure in the knowledge that any contamination can be bisined off later. Marvelous innovations in food preservation technology are not a substitute for clean, safe, intelligent ways of producing food in the first place.
Dr. Sullivan has acquired a patent on bisin, which is Generally Recognized as Safe by the FDA, and is reportedly talking to food producers about getting it to market.
I wonder if it will lead to a anti-aging also for living humans...
No... as aging is not caused by bacteria...
Why cant you just sell cold pasteurized meat?
Would this put an end to "aged beef"? (Not sure what "ages" beef.)
If bisin has a novel kill method and is capable of being used as a relatively broad-spectrum antibiotic, then it should be reserved for treating human infections, not creating shelf-stable meat (and a host of bacterial resistance in the food chain).
We have been here before. Protecting meat in the mass market means humans get drug "resistant" diseases.
But again, it goes with the "IF".
Pasturized meat makes it kind of hard to have it raw, which makes bloody steaks less tasty.
Well we're talking a "broad spectrum" of a couple bacteria that have to do with decompostion on the surface of meat rather than the (insert number) of bacteria in a wound or deal within the human physiology.
Aged beef is delicious :) no way that'll be replaced.
My only worry, which is an unfortunate by product of innovation is once again a sypathy for the farmer. If his meat doesn't spoil for 3 years, than other than consumption rates, there will be no need to buy new meat if it goes bad. On the other hand making it easier to sell to the 3rd world profiting where only the veggie growers currently do.
Also, how does this effect from meat? Will I be able to freeze as long/longer w/o freezer burn?
no need for freezing
Recalls due to ecoli have been expensive and a potential health nightmare in the past. It's sounding like these infections could be "bisined off", despite the article advising preventing such infections in the first place. One would imagine that even consumer might want to treat meat this way for safety. Restaurants might likewise be interested in stocking up on bisin to make sure that kitchens and refrigerators were free of contamination.
However, one also wonders about the potential for the emergence of bisin-resistant ecoli (BREC). Any one care to place odds on how long it will take for BREC to evolve and become the dominant strain of ecoli?
BTW, what changes after "three years"? Why can't the meat be retreated at this point? Presumably older meat will be frozen anyway, before the end of its shelf life, and used later, just as one does now with meat reaching the end of its shelf life.
Time & bacteria ages beef. ;) I would imagine people would still age beef, since there is a demand for it.
Basically they get a big chunk of beef, wrap it up, and then stick it in the fridge for like 30 days.
They take it out, cut away all of the rotten parts, and then the stuff in the middle is edible, and now called "aged" beef.
This process helps it develop flavor and I believe it also produces a more supple texture.