Plants are continually the generous source to supply man with valuable bioactive substances. Six plant extracts were evaluated as potential biopreservatives to solve the catastrophe of beef contamination with Salmonella Typhimurium and improve ground beef overall quality. Five of the examined plant extracts exhibited remarkable antibacterial activities, using different assays, against three S. Typhimurium strains. Supplementation of experimentally inoculated beef trimmings with pomegranate peel extract (PPE) and cinnamon bark extract (CBE) resulted in a sharp reduction in bacterial cell counts during storage period for 7 days. Blending of ground beef with the double minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC) from PPE or with a combination from PPE and CBE, at their MIC values, completely inhibited S. Typhimurium growth within the first days of storage. All of the examined sensory characteristics, e.g., odor, color and overall quality, were greatly raised subsequent to the supplementation of ground beef with plant extracts.PRACTICAL APPLICATIONSIn addition to their economical and health promoting benefits, the application of plant extracts, as natural and safe biopreservatives, could be highly recommended for the improvement of microbiological and sensory quality of ground beef. The supplementation of ground beef with plant extracts, i.e., PPE and CBE, resulted in the increasing of shelf life up to 7 days and complete inhibition of S. Typhimurium growth in the product. The proposed biopreservative agents and concentrations could be innovatively applied for the preservation of meat products.
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