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New products using pre-rigor beef

Project start date: 02 November 2009
Project end date: 30 June 2011
Publication date: 01 October 2010
Livestock species: Grassfed cattle, Grainfed cattle
Relevant regions: National
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The Numeat project developed a Very Fast Chilling (VFC) Technology platform to produce sausages from hot boned (pre-rigor) carcases.  
Numeat is a novel meat product created from very fast chilling and salting of pre-rigor beef to prevent pH decline.  A range of Numeat products under the “Mr Beaks” brand have been successfully launched.  The product has been proven to enhance eating quality and improve shelf life without preservatives due to much lower microbial levels.   Consumer acceptance of pricing at levels higher than the original premium price targets support their acceptance of the improved quality.  Numeat has generated incremental growth in Retail Sausage Category Sales and represents significant value to the Australian beef industry.   Benefits have been realised in every sector of the supply chain.  Meat can be sourced from either hot or cold boning plants but cold boning plants are likely to benefit up to $0.06/Kg more from the process than hot boning plants.
The benefits arising from Numeat in the 12 months up to September 2012 were estimated at approximately $5.3 million across the entire supply chain.  This equated to $4.98/Kg of additional value for whole supply chain. Direct increase in value to the current supply chain was $1.69/Kg or $9.29 per head in Table 1 based on using 10% of the carcases saleable yield for Numeat. Upwards of 40% of carcases saleable yield could be used for Numeat production and would increase direct value to the red meat industry1 to $36.72 per head.    
While exclusivity has now lapsed with Beak & Johnston, no other value adders have taken up this technology.

More information

Project manager: Rod Coogan
Primary researcher: University of New England