Visual evaluation of sliced Italian salami [research study]

Italian researchers Annalisa Romano, Paolo Masi, and Silvana Cavella take a close look at slices of salami in their paper, “Visual evaluation of sliced Italian salami by image analysis.”

Figure 1. Image of sliced salami batches a-p

Rather than using chemical analysis to determine the fat content in the salami, Romano’s team utilized computers to visually inspect the fat content. The computers were trained to  tease out several parameters, such as the number of fat particles, the fat particle area, and the intriguing ‘fat particle roundness’ parameter.

The researchers also assumed that the thickness of each slice was identical, making the approximation that “… the salami slice was representative of a salami of infinite length.”

Romano’s team concludes:

“The results confirmed that the image analysis protocol developed could extract the fat content automatically with good degree of accuracy (R2=0.75)… Further testing on larger type of meat products will be necessary before the presented procedure can be accepted and then used as a common method for measuring lipid in sliced sausage.”

The real meat of the research can be found here: Romano, A., Masi, P. and Cavella, S. (2017). Visual evaluation of sliced Italian salami by image analysis. Food Science & Nutrition, 6(1), pp.153-159.

BONUS: As an inverse of a study on sliced salami, check out an example of a study that has been salami sliced in Scientific Salami Slicing: 33 Papers from 1 study.