Journal: Applied Sciences, vol. 10, p. 1–38, 2020
International Standard Numbers:
Open Access: gold
Muscle food products play a vital role in human nutrition due to their sensory quality and high nutritional value. One well-known challenge of such products is the high perishability and limited shelf life unless suitable preservation or processing techniques are applied. Thermal processing is one of the well-established treatments that has been most commonly used in order to prepare food and ensure its safety. However, the application of inappropriate or severe thermal treatments may lead to undesirable changes in the sensory and nutritional quality of heat-processed products, and especially so for foods that are sensitive to thermal treatments, such as fish and meat and their products. In recent years, novel thermal treatments (e.g., ohmic heating, microwave) and non-thermal processing (e.g., high pressure, cold plasma) have emerged and proved to cause less damage to the quality of treated products than do conventional techniques. Several traditional assessment approaches have been extensively applied in order to evaluate and monitor changes in quality resulting from the use of thermal and non-thermal processing methods. Recent advances, nonetheless, have shown tremendous potential of various emerging analytical methods. Among these, spectroscopic techniques have received considerable attention due to many favorable features compared to conventional analysis methods. This review paper will provide an updated overview of both processing (thermal and non-thermal) and analytical techniques (traditional methods and spectroscopic ones). The opportunities and limitations will be discussed and possible directions for future research studies and applications will be suggested.