Meat tenderness is one of the highest ranking quality characteristics for red meats. Shear force test standards have been established to determine the best meat tenderness for various types of meat. The most common texture analysis method for tenderness is the Warner Bratzler test.

To perform the Warner Bratzler texture test, obtain a compression test machine tailored to the force requirements of your test. TestResources provides Warner Bratzler Meat Shear Fixture specifically designed to measure meat tenderness.

Warner-Bratzler Fixture

Warner-Bratzler Fixtures measure the force required to cut through a piece of meat. The fixture consists of a steel frame supporting a triangular shear blade. To test a meat sample such as steak, the steak is cooked, cooled and then cut into core samples.

Even, symmetrical samples can be difficult to achieve in the food testing industry. Mismatched sample sizes can lead to a large variance in test results and incorrect data analyses. Although exactly identical samples are not possible with meat testing, you can follow a few rules to get the best test results.

Specimen Size

Conducting a large number of tests can help even out the outliers. When testing each meat product, make sure to extract the samples in the same method from the same part of the product each time. Pay special attention to the direction of the cutting when creating samples. For example, cut with the steak fibers when cutting out samples each time.

Specimen Form

Sharp cutting tools are important to specimen uniformity. Dull cutting tools can create jagged edges and create variances between test data when each sample is tested. Make sure each sample is cut in parallel lines to create an even distribution of shear weight.

After carefully creating your core meat samples using these guidelines, the samples are loaded into the fixture and sheared with the test machine. The machine will record a precise force-deflection plot and maximum shear force is the highest point in the curve plot.

For help with gathering the most accurate test results possible, you can contact our application engineers. Our engineers will not only configure the best test machine and fixture for your application, but will help guide you to success in your test results

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