Jayden Lawson
Published by Jayden Lawson
Last Updated On: August 29, 2022

As a dedicated carnivore who loves ordering meat packages and testing out new delivery options, I never thought about the process behind how to make vacuum-sealed meat for delivery.

Out of sheer curiosity, I set aside a few days to research this topic and consulted a local butcher about the best techniques to vacuum-seal meat.

Today, I’ll share my findings about the dos and don'ts of this process.

Let's get into it.

Summary of the Key Findings

  • Meat should be vacuum packed as soon as the butcher chops it to prevent ice crystals from accumulating.
  • Vacuum sealing meat helps preserve it by preventing mold, fungi, and bacteria from growing.
  • Vacuum-sealed meat will stay in the fridge for up to 5 times longer than regular refrigerated meat.
  • Meat needs to be refrigerated at 0°F for more extended storage.

Vacuum Sealing Meat For Delivery

Close up shot of vacuum sealed fish

Vacuum sealing meat is one approach to avoid contaminating it. Because there is no oxygen around the meat, it can stay fresh for longer. Lipid oxidation, a chemical process responsible for the degradation of lipids in the meat, takes place roughly 15 minutes after exposure to air and leads to rancidness [1].

Meat should be vacuum packed in tiny quantities as soon as the butcher chops it. This is necessary to prevent ice crystals from accumulating on it and keep it fresh for up to a year.

You may observe that the color of the beef changes after it has been chopped and vacuum-packed. This is derived from myoglobin, the protein present in the muscle tissue [2].

This tissue is usually purple in color, although it can alter depending on the amount of oxygen it has been subjected to. The oxygen exposure causes the beef to turn brown or red in color.

"Vacuum packaging can extend product life by removing all the air from a package which is then sealed. The removal of the air is the key factor for preservation in this product."
- Heather Hancock, FSA Chairman

Vacuum-sealed meat is often preserved for a lengthy period; hence the meat is considerably brown in color compared to the meat found at your local grocery.

The packaging employed in stores maintains meat fresher for a limited time. This wrapping is known as Modified Atmosphere Packaging (MAP), which is intended for meat that will be consumed within the week.

Vacuum sealing preserves the freshness and taste the meat had at the time it was cut. Slicing the meat into small batches before you vacuum seal reduces food waste and saves money.

4 Things You Need To Vacuum Seal Meat

Close up shot of vacuum sealed steaks

To make breakdown meat and utilize a vacuum sealer as effectively as possible, you need a vacuum sealer, a vacuum seal bag, and a rolling pin.

If you don't own a vacuum sealer, you may still preserve meat by securely sealing it in aluminum foil, covering it with plastic wrap, and putting it in a refrigerator to have frozen meat.

It is also a great way to freeze meat without using any preservatives and ensures it stays fresh for 24 hours or more.

Below are the essential items you require to vacuum seal your meat.

1. Vacuum Sealer

Fish being vacuum sealed

A good vacuum sealer includes a barrier that prevents air, water, and unpleasant tastes from entering the package. With this approach, your beef will taste just as it did before delivery.

Vacuum sealers are beneficial for sous vide meals, preservation of fish following a fishing expedition, and even protecting important minerals from exposure to air. They prolong shelf life and enable bulk delivery.

There are several vacuum sealer brands available. Retail prices vary, and so does quality; a lower price does not automatically imply a good model, and conversely.

Browse around and read the reviews. Better still, ask colleagues and family since a recommendation from someone you know is valuable.

2. Vacuum Sealer Bag

You must select the appropriate freezer bag for your equipment, either an in-chamber vacuum sealer bag or an external vacuum sealer bag. They cannot be used interchangeably.

Choose a bag with an open top that is smaller than your device's seal bar and fits within the chamber if you have a chamber device.

Bag rolls for vacuum sealers may also be bought to cut the custom-sized bags.

You'll need to acquire small, medium, and big vacuum seals because they come in a variety of sizes.

I suggest choosing a package that includes a little bit of everything. This is important when you first start and are figuring out what works for you.

3. Rolling Pin

Close up shot of the handle of a rolling pin

Yes, a rolling pin. When you measure the meat and put it in a package, you will want to flatten it all for two reasons.

One is that the meat stacks better when each packet is flat.

The second is that thin flat packs of flash frozen meat defrost faster. After delivery, faster thawing periods mean you can get your delicious meals on the plate as early as possible, avoiding freezer burn.

4. Permanent Maker

Mark the dates on the meat packages using a permanent marker. This allows you to keep track of which meat pack should be delivered first.

4 Benefits Of Vacuum Sealing Meat

Close up shot of vacuum sealed beef

If you've been wondering if vacuum-sealed meat is safer for your consumption, then consider the following advantages of purchasing vacuum-packed meat.

1. Fresher Meat For A Longer Time

The limitation of exposure to air enables longer storage and preservation in the freezer or storage area. Vacuum sealing meat helps preserve it by preventing mold, fungi, and bacteria from growing.

This is useful for delivering seasonal foods that spoil rapidly when subjected to oxygen or moisture.

2. Cutting Costs

A person holding a credit card with a red background

There is no doubt that purchasing food in household packs and bulk will provide you with a better deal for your money.

You may save a lot of cash for your family by purchasing vacuum-sealing chunks throughout the year.

The vacuum packing method enables you to buy items less often and in larger quantities, including during low seasons, preventing time loss and, in particular, wasting spoiled food.

3. Freezer Burn Protection

Foods are protected from freezer burn as well as dehydration when vacuum sealed. Freezer burn develops when the air is in direct contact with moisture droplets around meat.

Vacuum sealing serves to avoid this by keeping air away from the meat. Freezer burn may not harm your well-being, but it damages the texture and flavor of your meat.

4. Minimize Waste

A person holding up a trash bag while staring at a camera

Bulk buying to save money can sometimes result in the food freezer being burnt or forgotten inside the refrigerator.

Not only would vacuum-packaging extra meat spare you cash, but it would also prevent waste because you may be able to enjoy those foods.

Furthermore, not needing to buy additional packaged shop products saves packaging waste.

You can freeze your meat for several hours before vacuum sealing it. This step is recommended to avoid having your meat crushed by the vacuum sealer.

2 Disadvantages Of Vacuum Sealing Meat

Vacum-sealing meat for delivery also comes with some drawbacks.

1. Anaerobic Bacteria Will Survive

A scientist holding a petri dish with bacteria

Most spoilage microorganisms require air and humidity to thrive and proliferate. One prevalent myth is that vacuum packing meat kills microorganisms and keeps food safe.

Nevertheless, certain microorganisms, classified as anaerobic microbes, survive in low oxygen settings.

Clostridium botulinum, for example, generates toxins that induce food poisoning, immobility, and, in many cases, death [3].

2. Special Bags Are Required

A person vacuum sealing something on a couch

Manual and automated vacuum sealers require special bags which are somewhat thicker and more durable than standard plastic bags and are the best for storing meat.

Employing non-vacuum-sealed plastic bags may still allow some oxygen in since they are generally semi-permeable to air. As a result, it is not assured that food packaged in a standard plastic bag would have a longer shelf life.

FAQs

How Long Does Vacuum Sealed Meat Last In The Fridge?

Vacuum-sealed meat will last in the fridge for six to ten days.

Does Vacuum Sealed Meat Need To Be Refrigerated?

Yes, vacuum-sealed meat needs to be refrigerated at 0°F for more extended storage.

Why Does Vacuum Sealed Meat Turn Brown?

Vacuum-sealed meat turns brown due to a lack of oxygen in the bag.

Making Vacuum Sealed Meat Ready For Delivery

Vacuum sealing meat is a must-do for everyone who despises the concept of food wastage and wishes to save cash.

To further prove that vacuum-sealed meat is still perfectly preserved after it travels across states, our team compiled a list of the best meat delivery services, many of which offer free shipping and customizable boxes to cater to every taste.


References:

  1. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/319078542_Vacuum_packaging_of_meat
  2. https://www.scielo.br/j/cta/a/3ZDMTNLBZ63pGz3DgsbyS7h/
  3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK553081/

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