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Packaged-meat labels that show freshness could replace use-by dates, reducing food waste

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Patches that change color as raw meat freshness deteriorates in sealed refrigerated products could soon become a reality on supermarket shelves, making it easier for shoppers to know if it’s still good to eat and reducing food waste.
Patches that change color as raw meat freshness deteriorates in sealed refrigerated products could soon become a reality on supermarket shelves, making it easier for shoppers to know if it’s still good to eat and reducing food waste.
The innovative approach, developed by Monash researchers, uses on-pack color indicators made from natural plant materials to show how fresh the beef is right at the moment.
The findings are published in the journal Food Quality and Safety.
The researchers, led by former Monash University Ph.D. student Debarati Bhadury (now at the University of Washington in Seattle), believe their method could reduce the amount of meat thrown away when it’s still safe to eat based on the “best before” stamp.
Using beef porterhouse steaks, the research demonstrated that when applied to the inside of transparent packaging film, the indicators consistently changed color in response to rising pH levels caused by growth of bacteria such as E.

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