Glucono Delta Lactone is a cure accelerator and speeds up development of cured meat colour. It hydrolyzes to form gluconic acid in water solution and thereby creates the desired pH. The rate of acid formulation is affected by temperature, concentration and the pH of the solution. It is permitted at a rate of 8ozs per 100lbs of meat (0.5%).
GDL is also permitted in semi-dry and dry sausages based on good manufacturing practices, where it reduces the pH. This rapid drop in pH helps to control the growth of meat spoilage organism until fermentation occurs and takes over this function. The addition of GDL can produce a biting acid taste if not carefully added.