Why does the food industry use Nitrite salt?
Nitrite salt, also known as sodium nitrite, has several benefits when used in food preservation and processing. Some of these benefits include:
- Antimicrobial properties: Nitrite salt has antimicrobial properties that help prevent the growth of bacteria, such as Clostridium botulinum, which can cause botulism. This helps to prevent food poisoning and spoilage.
- Improved flavor and color: Nitrite salt is often added to processed meats, such as bacon and ham, to enhance their flavor and improve their color. The addition of nitrite salt helps to form a characteristic pink color in these meats.
- Extended shelf life: Nitrite salt helps to extend the shelf life of processed meats by inhibiting the growth of bacteria. This allows the meats to be stored for longer periods of time without spoiling.
- Prevention of meat discoloration: Nitrite salt helps to prevent the discoloration of meat, such as the formation of a gray color in cooked bacon. This helps to maintain the appearance and quality of the meat.
- Improved texture: Nitrite salt can help to improve the texture of processed meats, making them more tender and juicy. This helps to improve the overall eating experience.
Photo of Salinen Austria Nitrite Salt (of highest quality):