Prospects of meat products
The demand for convenience meat based fast food is ever increasing due to rapid industrialization and urbanization, higher standards of living and increasing number of working women. Rising literacy and increasing health awareness also influence the purchasing pattern of the consumers. Globalization promises a wealth of product choices and product value for the consumer. The shift in the food consumption pattern from cereals to dairy and meat products is more prominent in the growing middle class with increasing purchasing power.
Value added products can be broadly classified based on processing, function and variety/convenience. Some of these include meat batter or emulsion products, marinated products, enrobed products, restructured products, cured and smoked products, low fat products, shelf stable products, traditional products etc. Wide range of meat products could be produced utilizing different meats and byproducts with indigenous and exotic processes and technologies. The products could be of semi- convenience (needs cooking before consumption) to ready to eat or heat and serve type. Processed products particularly from minced meat or emulsion based would be advantageous to incorporate non meat ingredients to improve palatability and reduce cost of production. Factors like raw materials, food additives and processing technologies applied as well as their possible interactions significantly contribute for the quality of processed meat products.