I&D+I Projects

CÁRNEOS - Safety & quality of processed meat products


Strategies for the quality and safety of processed meat products ensuring the reduction of compounds with carcinogenic potential


The quality of portuguese meat products is recognized. Their manufacturing is associated with traditional know-how in small production units that are an important factor in local and regional development. Recently, the world health organization released a report by the international agency for research on cancer (iarc), informing that meat products may increase the risk of colon cancer due to the presence of n-nitroso compounds and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (hpa). Thus, the meat products sector and all producers of traditional sausages with rural insertion and low technical differentiation may be threatened due to the concerns associated with the consumption of meat products.

This project aims to study ways of reducing the presence of carcinogenic substances in portuguese meat products, through the use of natural ingredients, biopreservation strategies, the use of edible active coatings and the application of emerging technologies, ensuring the control of pathogenic bacteria and organoleptic acceptance. The use of natural antimicrobial ingredients and substances (such as bacteriocins), combined with emerging technologies, is an excellent opportunity to promote the image of traditional products, increasing consumer confidence, and consequently the sustainability of the industry.

The development and innovation of portuguese meat products with minimization of chemical hazards will be have practical application. The development of scientific knowledge that leads us to demonstrate that our products are safe by the technological processes applied will be of great value to the meat industry in general as this will inform clearly on the issues raised that alarm consumers.

Potential stakeholders will first be the traditional sausage industry, which will be able to adopt improved technics and procedures made with the concomitant business profit. From the economic and social point of view, companies in the agri-food sector play a fundamental role, contributing to the intrinsic value of the regions and their promotion, generating wealth and contributing to the settlement of the populations. However, considering the current dynamics of the markets, it is important, if not decisive, the appearance of innovation, without it having a negative effect on the high sensorial quality of these products. Ultimately, the final beneficiaries will always be consumers increasingly informed, observant and demanding, particularly with the potential risks to eating certain foods.


Sausages, Smoked, Food Security, Food Quality, Processed Meat.


Universidade de Lisboa (Coordinator); Escola Superior de Biotecnologia – Universidade Católica Portuguesa; Faculdade de Medicina Veterinária; CAPOLIB - Cooperativa Agrícola de Boticas; Cercica - Cooperativa para a Educação e Reabilitação de Cidadãos Inadaptados de Cascais; Universidade de Évora; Irmãos Monteiro, S.A.; UTAD - Universidade de Trás-os- Montes e Alto Douro; ANCSUB - Associação Nacional de Criadores de Suínos de Raça Bísara; Paladares Alentejanos,Lda.

Financing ProgramExecution DateGlobal Budget
PDR2020 (PDR2020-101-031363)
Região: Sul
Data de início: 01/01/2017
Data de fim: 31/12/2021
Total: €464 201,14
FEADER: €348 150,86