Effect of ultimate pH on the quality characteristics of pork

B. S. Bidner, M. Ellis, M. S. Brewer, D. Campion, E. R. Wilson, F. K. McKeith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


A study was conducted to characterize the relationship between Longissimus thoracis ultimate pH (LTpH) and pork quality. Animals (n=47) were selected based on LTpH measured at 24 h postmortem. Data were analyzed using regression procedures with ultimate pH as the independent variable, and relationships were determined to be linear (L), quadratic (Q) or cubic (C). Ultimate pH explained 79% (C) of the variation in subjective color, which increased as pH increased. Drip loss, purge loss and L* value decreased as LTpH increased (R 2 = 0.57C, 0.77 Q and 0.68 Q, respectively). Shear force decreased and sensory juiciness increased as LTpH increased (R2 = 0.26Q and 0.46C, respectively). However, off flavor intensity increased as LTpH fell below pH 5.2 or exceeded 6.1 (R2=0.52C). Increasing LTpH, up to a point, will improve fresh pork quality and processed meat properties, whereas, above approximately 6.1, off-flavor may increase.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)139-154
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Muscle Foods
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2004

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science

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    Bidner, B. S., Ellis, M., Brewer, M. S., Campion, D., Wilson, E. R., & McKeith, F. K. (2004). Effect of ultimate pH on the quality characteristics of pork. Journal of Muscle Foods, 15(2), 139-154. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1745-4573.2004.tb00717.x