Physico-chemical shelf-life indicators of meat from broilers given Moringa oleifera leaf meal
The objective of the study was to determine the effect of using Moringa oleifera leaf meal (MOLM) as an additive on physico-chemical shelf life indicators of meat from broilers. A total of 432 1-day-old chicks were randomly allocated to four treatments (TRT’s). Water and feed was provided ad libitum. The feeding phases were pre-starter (0 to 7 days), starter (8 to 18 days), grower (19 to 28 days) and finisher (29 to 35 days).The four TRT’s contained graded levels of the MOLM at 1000 g/ton, 750 g/ton, 500 g/ton and 0 g/ton (control), respectively. The birds were slaughtered at 35 days of age and the breast muscle was sampled for meat pH, colour and drip loss measurements over 7 days. The pH levels in all the TRT’s were constant from Day 1 to Day 5, peaking on Day 6, and then declining on Day 7. Using MOLM as an additive had a significant effect on chickens, with TRT1 having the highest lightness (L*) values. The redness (a*) values were the highest in TRT2. Using MOLM as an additive had an effect on yellowness (b*) values. Drip loss was not affected by the dietary treatments. Using MOLM as an additive in broiler feeds produced chicken breast with a light (L*) appearance while shelf life indicators generally remained constant in the first 5-days of storage.
Keywords: Diet effect, drip loss, freshness, meat colour, meat pH