Key Stage 4: 14-16 Years Meat Storage & Preparation

Introduction to the module

The aim of this module is to help pupils understand how food is stored safely, how to prepare and cook meat for consumption, what happens to meat when cooked and how we can tenderise meat.

All food needs to be stored and prepared safely. New developments in preservation and packaging of meat have lead to a greater variety and range of fresh meat and meat products.

Preservation and packaging can help to prevent food deterioration and food poisoning. For wise consumers, this is economical and also reduces food wastage.

A sound knowledge of different preparation and cooking techniques for meat will also improve the quality and flavour of products and meals.

This module explains the different methods of food preservation, and how the different methods affect the texture, colour and flavour of meat meals.

Key Messages

The key messages of the module include:

  1. Food preservation is important to increase the shelf life of products.
  2. Shelf life depends on: water; acidity; hygienic handling; methods of preservation.
  3. Convection is where currents of hot air or hot liquid transfer the heat energy to the food.
  4. Conduction is where heat is transferred through solid objects by the vibration of heated molecules.
  5. Radiation is where heat is transferred from a heat source in the form of rays which travel quickly in straight lines.
  6. Meat can be tenderised by physical action, enzymes or acids and marinades.
  7. Meat changes colour during food preparation when the pigment myoglobin changes.


Suggested classroom activities;

  • View the powerpoint presentation – meat storage, preparation and cooking.
  • Then use the powerpoint to complete the worksheet - Meat Storage, Preparation and cooking – a teachers answer sheet is also included.
  • Discuss the document – Changes that happens when you cook meat – this explains how the protein is denatured, how collagen is softened and the maillard reaction.
  • Other worksheets
  • Activity 1 , question sheet and answer information sheet on – Which type of food preservation is it?
  • Activity 2 – worksheet on Cooking with red meat – asking pupils to state which method of heat transfer is used to cook the meat, Conduction, Convection or Radiation?
  • Activity 3- looks at methods of tenderising meat. It includes information about different methods of tenderising meat and then pupil activity.