Processing fails to hide boar taint

Boar taint does not survive processing, and in some products, such as sausages, can be unacceptable to consumers, according to tests by French food manufacturer Bigard.

A group of trained employees identified boar taint meat by smell and this was used to make, among other things, sausages.

Coarse ground sausages, which can contain a high concentration of androsterone, were tested by a tasting panel which voted them unacceptable.

Even batches with 50-80% of gilt meat were unpleasant, according to the panel. The only process that masked the smell and taste of boar taint was to make highly spiced sausages.

In the trials 4,800 young pigs were tested, including 750 castrated males. Boar taint was detected in4$% of the non-castrates.

The “smelly” pork was processed into a large range of processed products, which were then tested. A large proportion of lardons expressed a strong smell as did a good number of cooked ham batches, even though the cooked ham contained only 3% fat.

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