MVI274 Muscle Food- Science and Technology

Credits (ECTS):10

Course responsible:Rune Rødbotten

Campus / Online:Taught campus Ås

Teaching language:Norsk

Limits of class size:35

Course frequency:Annually

Nominal workload:Organized education and reports 200 hrs. Selfstudy 50 hrs.

Teaching and exam period:The course is taught and evaluated in the spring parallel.

About this course

An intial introduction to Norway's prerequisites for producing different types of muscle food and how this is related to Norway's suitability to contribute to the great global challenge of obtaining protein-rich food in a sustainable way. Muscle structure and conversion of muscle to meat are then explained. Relevant exercises are being set up that illustrate this. Then the course goes through traditional and modern qualities for muscle food. These will be eating quality, health/nutrition, good animal welfare and low environmental impact.

  • The structure of the muscle and its proteins in myofibrils and in connective tissue, and in pigment proteins (myoglobin, hemoglobin, astaxantins) will be described.
  • The growth and development of muscle plus fiber type composition is included.
  • Generally about the composition of the meat.
  • Muscle foods in the diet and their healthiness.
  • Important proteolytic and lipolytic enzymes are included.
  • Primary cooling and its effect on meat quality are discussed.
  • Common technologies (cooling storage, freezing, thawing and heat treatment) and importance for eating quality and economics are lectured.
  • Lipid and protein oxidation.
  • Biomarkers of stress and welfare are introduced before biochemical changes during the actual slaughter process. Animal welfare labeling.
  • Meat production and sustainability in a life cycle and local perspective.

The course contains mandatory exercises and possibly an excursion.

Learning outcome


The students will be trained to understand and explain the structure of meat and fish muscles. They should also be able to describe biochemical / physiological changes that take place from muscle to meat. The students should know how technical processes changes the quality of meat and what type of quality parameters are mostly affected. The students will get a basic understanding of how the raw material quality varies and be able to use the knowledge to set up constraints in later product development projects/courses. The students will get familiar with the most common raw material quality analysis, so they can use these in later projects. In introduction into the most discussed aspects regarding muscle/meat food production, healthiness, animal welfare and environmental impact.


The student should know common quality analyses of meat and fish.

General competence

The course will strengthen the general knowledge regarding report writing, processing of data and laboratory skills.

  • The course consists of 50-60 hrs lectures and 15-25 hrs of laboratory practicals.

    Excursion, if available resources

  • MVI100, KJM100, KJB100, KJB201
  • Final written exam, counts 100 %. A - F

  • An external examiner evaluate exam papers.
  • Practicals and reports.
  • Four to six hours lectures / practicals per week. Some practicals last longer than two hrs.

    A digital lab teaching system has been established. If used, the "practical " lab time is shortened (videos are used).

  • Special requirements in Natural science.