Dehydration

a. Definition. Dehydration is a loss of water from a product, usually due to improper storage conditions. You, the veterinary food inspection specialist, will examine the product and determine if a dried or porous surface and a dark color exists. These are determining factors for this deteriorative condition.

b. Non-Frozen Product. Dehydration of a non-frozen product results in a drying out (dry, shrunken appearance) of the surface, usually accompanied by a darkening of the product. This darkening is due to an accumulation of solid matter.

c. Frozen Product. Dehydration (freezer burn) in a frozen product is evidenced by a porous texture, whereby the tissue becomes tough and fibrous. When this condition exists, protein denaturation normally occurs. The abnormal color may appear as patch-like areas. The affected product will retain its original shape.

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