Print version ISSN 0103-8478
GARCIA, Carlos Eduardo Rocha et al. Carotenoids bixin and norbixin from annatto (Bixa orellana L.) as antioxidants in meat products. Cienc. Rural [online]. 2012, vol.42, n.8, pp. 1510-1517. ISSN 0103-8478. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0103-84782012000800029.
Lipid oxidation is one of the major modifications that affect meat products due to chemical composition, heat and grinding processes beyond the routine use of sodium chloride, a recognized catalyst of this reaction. Antioxidants are substances used to inhibit or retard oxidative rancidity. However the use of these compounds has been drawing the attention of consumers and regulatory agencies about the safety of synthetic additives consumption. This study aimed to evaluate the use of carotenoids bixin and norbixin as antioxidants in meat products by review of the chemical characteristics, methods of production, toxicity and technological applications. These pigments are extracted from annatto (Bixa orellana L.) using organic solvents, supercritical extraction or microwaves. In Brazil, the use of these substances is forecast by law as food colorant, however, this carotenoids show a large unsaturated carbon chains that allow the addition of free radicals and enable their use as antioxidant. The structural differences between bixin and norbixin result in distinct polarity, solubility and coloration, and consequently in different technological applications. At concentrations established by regulatory agencies, the use of these compounds is safe and, in addition to applications such as dyes, can be used by industries as natural antioxidants, which is an alternative capable of replace or minimize the use of synthetic additives in meat products.
Keywords : additive; colorant; meat; natural antioxidant; pigment; rancidity; oxidation.