How much can we expect from X-ray fat analysis?

How much can we expect from X-ray fat analysis?
4. Dec, 2018
Have you heard about X-ray fat analysis of meat, but still wonder about the real value. This video equips meat producers to make the right choices when acquiring an X-ray solution, including an in-depth look at why accuracy is so important and how just a slight improvement in measurement accuracy can yield thousands of dollars or euros per day.

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How much can we expect from X-ray fat analysis?
Speaker: Have you heard about fat analysis but still wondered how it can increase profits? In this film, we'll show you how accurate tests with the purpose built MeatMaster can boost profits in a real-world scenario. There'll be no complaints from the customer about this delivery because as always the fat content is spot on. Meanwhile, the producer is more than happy with the situation because he has hit his lean point precisely, making the very best use of raw material and making maximum profit.

The classic way to estimate fat in meat
Jens Borg: Well, traditionally the butcher would look at the meat and say, "Well, it's so and so." It's 20% fat but that way it has been abandoned all over the world now. Then you can take out a sample from your batch, take that to the lab and do chemical analysis or NIR analysis.That's a good way to do it but to grab a sample from a batch of say, 3000 pounds and then to grab maybe 100 grams and say, "This is representative for the entire batch." That is extremely difficult. That's why it's very important to measure the entire batch, all the meat that goes into the batch should be measured.


That's the only way you can ensure that your fat number is correct and there are a few ways to do that and X-ray has become the golden standard.

How fat in meat is measured with the MeayMaster II
Ricky Granger: We insert the MeatMaster II directly after our initial grinding process, so we'll grind up our raw materials and then pass them through the machine. Once the materials passes the machine, we get very reliable readings on the fat content and the total weight.

Speaker: Users of the MeatMaster have found it to be at least 0.2% to 0.3% more accurate than alternative in-line analytical solutions.


Ricky: Using the MeatMaster II, we're able to target a fat percentage for our batches and we find that the MeatMaster II is very accurate in determining the fat percentage of those batches. Therefore, since we're able to set a target and hit it consistently, has improved our yield.

Speaker: Now 0.2% to 0.3% may not sound like much of a difference, but it can result in a huge boost in value for the company using it. Let's see how, using two different production plants as examples. Production Manager A has set a fat specification of maximum 20% fat in his burger products. He's using an analytical method with an error of 0.8%. This margin of error gives them a certain variation of a time and it gives him a distribution curve like this one, where he has set the fat point to 18.4% to make sure that he does not go over the target of 20%.


The setpoint is calculated by multiplying the 0.8% error with the recommended standard deviation interval of 2. 0.8% times 2 equals 1.6% subtracted from 20%, gives a setpoint of 18.4%. Now, let's see how another Production Manager B is doing things at another big production plant. He's got his analytical error down to 0.6%. This means that his fat content does not vary quite so much. This production manager can use more fat in his burgers, still with confidence that he will be on target. In fact, he's been doing this consistently for years and now the head office is really starting to take notice. This is because the price difference between the fat and the leaner raw material has been around €1 per kilo. Since he is producing around 25 tons of burgers daily, this had being giving a saving of around €1,000 per day on raw material costs.

The value of a MeatMaster II
Ricky: The results that we get on the FoodScan compares very favorably to the MeatMaster, they're very close. As a matter of fact, we've done our own analysis in-house and over the course of about 500 samples. We found that the average difference between the FoodScan and the MeatMaster was negligent, literally 0.00 on average.


Speaker: Besides the obvious financial benefits, the MeatMaster II helps to achieve greater consistency in quality that is appreciated throughout the value chain.


Jens: Fuel energy X-ray, which was introduced by FOSS back in 2003, with our first MeatMaster has become the golden standard of the industry.


Ricky Granger: Utilizing the MeatMaster II we've been able to increase our efficiency, improve our lean point difference, which is our yield, and improve our product consistency.


Jens: If you want something that really measures accurately for the purpose your working with, you need a product that has been designed specifically for that purpose and the MeatMaster, and especially the MeatMaster II, is the latest in this development.


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