Basic processing of goat meat in Europe

Posted on 8 August 2018 by Makhosi Mahlangu

Goat meat is one of the most consumed meats in the World and Portugal traditionally consumes special kid meat in Easter and Christmas. Goat meat represents an important part of food consumption and is one of the main products of several traditional dishes in Mediterranean diet and consumers value its low-fat as high-quality products.


Nevertheless, meat from heavier animals and particularly the older ones as well as culled goats are not very well appreciated. Such meat is more suitable to process as drought, cured with salts or smoked meat products. In Spain, as well as in other European countries as Italy, the draught animals, as well as the culled goats, are slaughtered, salted, smoked and air dried following a recipe for cured ham laid down 2000 years ago. This product was called cecina, after the Latin siccina that means cured meat, and nowadays is being made with top quality beef also designated popularly as “beef ham”. This product also comes as cecina de cabra and cecina de castron, made from the legs of goat meat called “goat ham”, as well violin di capra an Italy typical goat dry-cured goat ham.

Also in Brazil, particularly in northeast the manufacturing of fermented sausages containing goat meat is an alternative use of meat from old animals and to increase the added value of dry salted goat and sheep meats.

There have been studies on the effect of salt and other products as kinnow and pomegrade on colour and oxidative stability of goat meat during refrigerated storage. So, the use of processes as salting, smoking and air-drying to preserve meat products was a practice before the global usage of refrigeration but nowadays becomes more and more important as a way to recover old recipes for upgrading meat products. There is a need to preserve culinary history. Such historic technologies could be used to uplift continents like Africa.


Goat meat quality. Effects of salting, air-drying and ageing processes
A. Teixeira∗, E. Pereira, E.S. Rodrigues