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Phenols are plant metabolites characterised by several interesting bioactive properties such as antioxidant and bactericidal activities. In this study the application of a phenols concentrate (PC) from olive vegetation water to two different fresh products – gilt-head seabream (Sparus aurata) and chicken breast – was described. Products were treated in a bath of PC (22 g/L; chicken breast) or sprayed with two different solutions (L1:0.75 and L2:1.5 mg/mL; seabream) and then stored under refrigeration conditions. The shelf life was monitored through microbiological analyses – quality index method for seabream and a specific sensory index for raw breast. The secondary products of lipid-peroxidation of the chicken breast were determined using the thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBARs) test on cooked samples. Multivariate statistical techniques were adopted to investigate the impact of phenols and microbiological data were fitted by DMfit software. In seabream, the levels of PC did not highlight any significant difference on microbiological and sensory features. DMfit models suggested an effect only on H2S producing bacteria with an increased lag phase compared to the control samples (C: 87 h vs L2: 136 h). The results on chicken breast showed that the PC bath clearly modified the growth of Pseudomonas and Enterobacteriaceae. The phenol dipping was effective in limiting lipid-peroxidation (TBARs) after cooking. Treated samples disclosed an increase of shelf life of 2 days. These could be considered as preliminary findings suggesting the use of this concentrate as preservative in some fresh products.
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