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Seasoning Blends & Meat Formulations - Reference


The following table is included to assist you in dealing with sausage product defects, and includes a description, as well as causes & remedies for many of the problems encountered occasionally by sausage makers.

Defect Description Cause(s) Remedy
Ruptured casings Casings rupture or
split during cooking
Stuffed too tightly
Bacterial – gas producer
Stuff less tightly.
Check sanitation.
Change sanitizer.
Colour problems (external) Streaking Smoked while too wet Increase drying time.
Poor smoke colour Smoked while too dry Shorten drying time.
Colour problems (internal)
Pale colour Lacks desirable colour Insufficient curing time Use pre-blends.
Greening Uniform greenish colour Too much NO2 (nitrite burn) Reduce NO2. Check sanitation.
Green cores Green center Bacterial – Lactobacillus
Check cook cycle (153°F critical temp)
Green rings Concentric green rings Bacterial – Lactobacillus
Check cook cycle (153°F critical temp)
Fading Light or chemical fading Display lights
Sloppy rinse of sanitizers
Gas flush.
Vacuum package.
Use amber film.
Rinse equipment more
Case hardening Hard, dry surface Humidity too low Increase humidity.
  Wet interior Drying too fast Increase drying time.
Fatting out Separation of fat Too much fat in formulation Reduce fat level.
Fat caps Fat on surface Chopping temp too high  
Fat caps Fat on surface between casing & product Cooked too fast Chop to 60 - 62°F.
Fat pockets Fat pockets throughout product Insufficient contractile proteins.

Excessive chopping.

Too little salt, or salt omitted.

Overworking or pumping long distances.

Too much rework (previously cooked product).

Insufficient mixing (course-cut product)
Cook slower.

Decrease level of high collagen meats.

Sharpen chopper knives, reduce chopping time.

Check salt addition.

Change production layout.

Reduce rework level.

Increase mixing time.
Gassiness Vacuum packages bloat Bacterial gas produced Check sanitation, thermal processing schedule.
Gelatin pockets Gelatin pockets Too much connective tissue in formulation Reduce connective tissue level. Preblend.
Mould growth Fuzz on surface Poor sanitation (outside air in plant) Check sanitation.

Use filters in ventilation system.

Maintain positive room air pressure.
Particle definition poor Coarse-cut sausage lack clean fat/lean distinction Dull chopper-grinder blades

Chopping temperature too warm
Sharpen plates and knives.

Chop at 28-32°F.
Peelability poor Inedible casing will not peel easily Surface drying too severe

Poor skin formulation
Operate smokehouse at higher humidity.

Steam cook last 10 minutes of cycle.
Putrefaction Undesirable odour Putrefactive bacteria Check thermal processing temperature.

Check sanitation.
Smearing Fat smearing, leaving undesirable appearance in fresh sausages Overworking

Meat temperature too warm
Minimize mixing.

Stuff at 32°F.

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In This Section
Seasoning Blends & Meat Formulations
Reference Pages
Trouble Shooting Guide for Sausage Makers
Ensuring Good Quality Ham
Brine Preparation
Dry & Semi-Dry Sausage
Trouble Shooting Guide for Fermented Meats
Predicting Food Spoilage
Composition of Beef and Pork
Moisture and Protein Levels

Crushed Red Pepper

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