Comparison of quality attributes of shell eggs subjected to directional microwave technology

D. G. Lakins, C. Z. Alvarado, A. M. Luna, S. F. O'Keefe, J. B. Boyce, L. D. Thompson, M. T. Brashears, J. C. Brooks, M. M. Brashears

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Microwaves have been shown to cause thermal as well as nonthermal destruction of pathogens such as Salmonella, which can be found in shell eggs. The objective of this study was to determine if using microwave technology would cause detrimental quality effects in shell eggs. Treatments included control (no treatment) and microwave-treated (20 s) shell eggs. There were no differences in mineral content, fatty acid profile, Haugh units, broken-out score, yolk index, emulsion stability, pH of whole egg, and foaming capacity between 2 treatments (P ≥ 0.05). At 0 and 30 d, there were no noticeable differences in H2O activity between 2 treatments. The foaming stability and albumen thermocoagulation of microwave-treated eggs were significantly higher than control eggs (P ≤ 0.05). The control eggs had significantly higher emulsion capacity and lower vitelline membrane strength than the micro-wave-treated eggs (P ≤ 0.05). Poached eggs were evaluated by sensory testing for hardness, yolk color, and albumen color, and there are no noticeable differences at 0, 15, or 30 d. At 0 d, the color of control albumen was more yellow than the microwave-treated albumen, and the chalazae of the microwave-treated eggs was more attached than the control eggs (P ≤ 0.05). The TBA reactive substances were similar for 2 treatments at 0, 15, and 30 d. Peroxide values were significantly higher in the microwave-treated eggs at d 0 (P ≤ 0.05), but at 15 and 30 d, no prominent differences in peroxide values were noted (P ≥ 0.05). Therefore, microwave technology can be applied to shell eggs without causing detrimental effects to quality.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1257-1265
Number of pages9
JournalPoultry science
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2009


  • Directional microwave
  • Oxidation
  • Quality
  • Salmonella
  • Shell egg


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