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ABSTRACT

Effects of packaging materials on water-holding capacity (WHC), thaw and cook losses, TBA value, moisture and fat content, and sensory characteristics of ground pork held in frozen storage for 13, 26, or 39 wk were examined. Moisture and juiciness decreased and total losses (thaw + cook) increased over time regardless of packaging. WHC decreased most in PVC-packaged pork (fresh = 0.53, 39 wk = 0.17) and least for vacuum-packaged pork (39 wk = 0.25). After 39 wk TBA values were highest for PVC-packaged (2.98) and lowest for vacuum-packaged pork (1.16). Rancid and sour odors and flavors followed similar trends.