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Meat-based products and seafood products are highly perishable food products whose conservation is vital. Badly carried out, it can lead to serious hygiene problems, causing not only risks to health but also heavy economic losses, and this is particularly frequent in the case of new products.
The use of protective cultures, which aims to restrict these problems, has been under consideration for several years but has not really taken off, partly due to a lack of knowledge of the ecosystems of these products. The players at the RMT FLOREPRO have decided to pool their means and academic knowledge on the one hand, and their expertise in the products on the other, in order to move knowledge forward regarding the ecosystem of meat-based and seafood products as well as that regarding the impact of protective cultures on these ecosystems and on the quality of the products.
The aim of this project is to scientifically back up the benefits that protective cultures could offer in the field of seafood products and meat-based products. The project includes three tasks:
- the most exhaustive characterisation possible of the ecosystems of eight meat-based and seafood products using the most efficient method currently available, pyrosequencing of the DNA 16S bacteria present, before storage and after the use-by date,
- isolation of the bacteria which has the potential to cause spoilage from these products,
- the development and pooling of matrix models and sensorial analyses in order to reproduce the spoilage and prove the ability of the bacteria isolated in the first task to cause spoilage,
- assessment of the impact of pre-existing protective cultures on spoilage, sensorial qualities and the global ecosystem of the products selected.
The partners in the project are made up of academic partners, technical centres and one company which was a forerunner in the marketing of protective cultures. Non-funded industrialists have joined the project in order to supply the necessary raw materials. The partners' skills, expertises and missions are complimentary and encompass meat-based products and seafood products. The chosen products are from a range of origins (beef, veal, poultry, pork, fish, crustacae) and processes (minced, cubed, filleted, shelled products) and in particular concern new products for which we have very little hindsight regarding their ecosystems and their sanitary quality.

This project, labelised by the AQUIMER Pole of Competitiveness on the 14th May, 2010, is co-labelised by the 'Valorial' and 'Inno'Viandes' Poles


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