Left Continue shopping
Your Order

You have no items in your cart


Meat and refrigerator temperature

Beef and contamination

As we well know, organic meat contains a good level of water and proteins which allow for excellent nutritional performance, but at the same time these elements represent the ideal habitat for the proliferation of bacteria and microbes, therefore attention and caution is required in the conservation phase . The proliferation of microbes in meat is a completely natural process and occurs at every stage of processing: it begins with slaughter and ends with conservation.

Attention must be paid above all to the last phase which, if carried out without the necessary care, risks compromising the balance that had been kept intact until then. The proliferation of bacteria involves the modification of the external appearance of the cut of meat and consequently also of the taste, carelessness is therefore the main cause of the loss of product quality. Industry experts call it shelf-life and it corresponds to the "expiry" or "best before" date shown on the label.

100% Italian meat and shelf-life

Shelf life literally means commercial life and corresponds to the period during which a product can be stored without altering the initial conditions. According to European regulations, the period must be highlighted on the label of the cut of meat and depends on multiple factors: type of slaughter, packaging method and preservation method.

In fact, conservation is the main responsible for any alteration of the organoleptic conditions and consequently for the safety of what is brought to the table. Increasing the shelf-line is possible and to do so you need to act in different directions: maintaining a constant temperature, correct refrigeration, freezing or quick freezing. You need to make a distinction and check which solution is the most correct for your needs.

Italian meat and refrigeration

Refrigeration is the action that keeps food at a constant temperature that oscillates between 0 and 4°C. In this phase the growth and proliferation of microbes is slowed down and not blocked, therefore maximum attention is required. Usually this phase consists of keeping the meat in the refrigerator and, given the continuous opening and closing, risks accelerating the growth of microbes and the consequent deterioration of the beef.

This is why the recommendations for using meat indicate that the meat should be kept in the refrigerator for a maximum of 3 or 4 days and, other fundamental notes, it is necessary to consider the type of refrigerator we have available and the type of product: for example meat ground meat lasts less than a large cut of meat.

How do you regulate the refrigerator temperature?

As regards the home refrigerator, we remind you that in general the temperature must never exceed 4° C, to prevent bacteria and mold from forming, to allow good preservation of the food and meat we place inside. In more modern refrigerators the temperature tends to regulate itself, but it is always a good idea to check it often to avoid it being too high or too low. Furthermore, remember that the temperature can also be adjusted based on the quantity of food you have inside. Finally, it is good practice to place the meat in the part of the refrigerator with a lower temperature - approximately 2°C - therefore preferably on the shelf positioned above the vegetable drawer.

Italian meat and freezing

In addition to the refrigerator there is the freezer where the freezing phase takes place. Here, attention must be paid to the time that food takes to freeze - it can take up to 20 hours. The temperature that a professional freezer can reach is -20°C and bacterial proliferation is - to all intents and purposes - blocked. Often, however, in our homes we do not have a professional freezer that reaches these minimum temperatures, which is why it is very important to freeze food adequately.

We also remember that meat begins to freeze when it reaches -1.5°C, in other words small ice crystals begin to form inside the meat fibre. This is why when you cook a previously frozen cut of meat it seems to be drier on the palate: during defrosting, the ice crystals melt and absorb the water naturally contained in the meat. The advice is to dab the cut of meat with absorbent paper before proceeding with freezing and if possible, divide it into smaller portions so as to speed up the action and the creation of a reduced number of ice crystals. Properly frozen meat has an average shelf life of 6 months, but even in this case it depends on the type of product.

Italian meat and freezing

Freezing brings the product to a much lower temperature: between -50 and -60 °C. This process occurs at an industrial level in long production chains that need to conserve the product for a medium-long period of time. The ice crystals that form in the meat are very small and minimally compromise the quality of the final product.

Freezing therefore does not interfere in any way with the structure of the meat and avoids the loss of liquids and the consequent sensation of a "dry" steak. Although freezing is an ideal condition for long conservation, caution is needed when approaching the phase as it risks compromising the final flavour, even though the action of bacterial proliferation is interrupted.

Carne Genuina recommends…

If preservation methods range from ingenious ideas to ready-to-use solutions, it is necessary to keep the idea clear that to obtain the result it is essential to avoid interrupting the cold chain. This means that a previously frozen food cannot undergo the same treatment after passing through another phase.

Carne Genuina chooses to offer its products vacuum-packed in order to minimize the risk of bacterial contamination and offer the most convenient solution for preserving its meat and suitable for the final consumer. However, it is important to remember that each cut of meat has its own needs and it is necessary to follow very specific rules to receive the best and offer maximum taste. The idea is to cook the meat when it is at room temperature, so as to avoid any thermal shocks and obtain a succulent and tasty dish.

If you want to know more about preserving meat, how to store it in the refrigerator, vacuum-packing meat and storing it in the freezer, read our dedicated article .