• Alternative uses for co-products: Harnessing the potential of valuable compounds from meat processing chains

      Mullen, Anne Maria; Álvarez García, Carlos; Zeugolis, Dimitrios; Henchion, Maeve; O'Neill, Eileen; Drummond, Liana; Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Ireland; 11/F/043 (Elsevier, 03/05/2017)
      Opportunities for exploiting the inherent value of protein-rich meat processing co-products, in the context of increased global demand for protein and for sustainable processing systems, are discussed. While direct consumption maybe the most profitable route for some, this approach is influenced greatly by local and cultural traditions. A more profitable and sustainable approach may be found in recognizing this readily available and under-utilised resource can provide high value components, such as proteins, with targeted high value functionality of relevance to a variety of sectors. Applications in food & beverages, petfood biomedical and nutrition arenas are discussed. Utilization of the raw material in its entirety is a necessary underlying principle in this approach to help maintain minimum waste generation. Understanding consumer attitudes to these products, in particular when used in food or beverage systems, is critical in optimizing commercialization strategies.
    • Novel “gel demineralizing” method for protein recovery from fat rendering waste stream based on its gelling properties

      Álvarez García, Carlos; Drummond, Liana; Mullen, Anne Maria (Elsevier, 2018-11)
      Fat rendering is a common process in the meat industry, whereby fatty or oily materials are melted away or cooked from the solid portion of the animal tissue. Once the fat, and more solid protein in the form of greaves, has been removed a co-product called glue water or stick water is produced which in generally considered a waste product. This study was established to investigate ways to revalorise this product and reduce the economic and environmental impact of this waste material. Proximate characterisation shows it contains 1.1–1.3% w/w of protein along with similar concentration of ashes (1.3% w/w). While low in protein this is a key pollutant if the product is disposed of, and could also represent an interesting protein source for downstream applications. In order to recover these proteins the salt has to be removed. Therefore, after the techno-functional properties of the raw material and of the recovered proteins were evaluated, especially those related to gelling formation, a new demineralizing method based on the excellent gelling properties of these proteins was developed and results compared with those obtained from three different ultrafiltration membranes (10, 3 and 1 kDa MWCO). Protein recovery was greater for the new method (79–90%) (50–77%); however, the amount of salt removed was higher when ultrafiltration was employed (90% compared to 81%).
    • Opportunities and perspectives for utilisation of co-products in the meat industry

      Lynch, Sarah A.; Mullen, Anne Maria; O'Neill, Eileen; Drummond, Liana; Álvarez García, Carlos; Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine; 11/F/043 (Elsevier, 2018-06-19)
      Meat co-products are the non-meat components arising from meat processing/fabrication and are generated in large quantities on a daily basis. Co-products are considered as low added-value products, and in general it is difficult for industries to divert efforts into increasing their value. While many of these products can be edible those not used for human consumption or pet food is usually processed to be used as animal feed, fertilizer or fuel. However, to a large extent meat co-products are an excellent source of high nutritive value protein, minerals and vitamins and hence may be better diverted to contribute to alleviate the increasing global demand for protein. In this review the current uses, legislation and potential techniques for meat co-products processing are reviewed with the aim of showing a route to improve meat industry sustainability, profitability and better usage of available resources.