Animal Industry Report

Extension Number

ASL R2388


Animal Products

Summary and Implications

The objective of this study was to determine the best irradiation markers in irradiated meat. Raw and cooked beef loins, pork loins and chicken thighs were irradiated at 0 or 5 kGy. The amounts of hydrocarbons, 2-alkylcyclobutanones, and sulfur volatiles were determined after 0 and 6 months of frozen storage. Two hydrocarbons (8-heptadecene (C17:1) and 6,9-heptadecadiene (C17:2)) and two 2- alkylcyclobutanones (2-dodecylcyclobutanone (DCB) and 2-tetradecylcyclobutanone (TCB)) were detected only in irradiated raw and cooked meats. Although pre-cooked irradiated meats produced more hydrocarbons and 2- alkylcyclobutanones than the irradiated cooked ones, the amounts of individual hydrocarbons and 2- alkylcyclobutanones, such as 8-heptadecene, 6,9- heptadecadiene, DCB, and TCB, were sufficient enough to identify whether the meat was irradiated or not. Dimethyl disulfide and dimethyl trisulfide were detected only in irradiated meats, but dimethyl trisulfide disappeared after 6 months of frozen storage under oxygen permeable packaging conditions. This indicated that only dimethyl disulfide could be used as an irradiation marker for the meat stored in frozen conditions for a long time.

Copyright Holder

Iowa State University