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Convenient meat and meat products. Societal and technological issues
Tijdschriftbijdrage - Tijdschriftartikel
In past and contemporary foodscapes, meat and meat products have not only been following convenience trends, they have been at the heart of them. Historically, the first substantial demands for meat convenience must have been for the outsourcing of hunting or domestication, as well as slaughtering activities. In its turn, this prompted concerns for shelf-life stabilisation and the development of preservation strategies, such as meat fermentation. Demands for ease of preparation and consumption can be traced back to Antiquity but have gained in importance over the centuries, especially with the emergence of novel socio-cultural expectations and (perceived) time scarcity. Amongst other trends, this has led to the creation of ready meals and meat snacks and the expansion of urban fast food cultures. Additionally, contemporary requirements focus on the reduction of mental investments, via the “convenient” concealment of slaughtering, the optimisation of nutritional qualities, and the instant incorporation of more intangible matters, such as variety, hedonistic qualities, reassurance, and identity. An overview is given of the technological issues related to the creation of meat convenience, in its broadest sense, along with their societal implications.
Trefwoorden:Convenience; Meat; Packaging; Shelf-life; Consumer; Slaughter