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Hello Fellow Canadians - nitrite question

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
Hello from Eastern Canada,

Just wondering if any of you read through the canada food inspection agency / health canada / meat inspection regulation on the use of nitrites?

From what I can gather is that for meat to be considered cured in Canada, there must be:

100 PPM of sodium nitrites minimum
200 PPM of sodium nitrites maximum

There is an exception for bacon
120 PPM of sodium nitrites maximum for bacon.

I see in some threads that some members say you can dry cure bacon at a maximum rate of 200 PPM but I do not believe that is the case because bacon is listed separately.

There seems to be some similarity with American regulations but I want to be sure.

I can get the links to the information if you want.

In Solidarity,

post #2 of 5

I stopped using sodium nitrite a long time ago for my "bacon". The reason for the 120ppm nitrites for bacon is due to the fact that bacon is fried with high temperatures.  When the nitrites are subjected to these high temperature, the deadly "nitrosamines" are formed so the government wants you to use less nitrites for this reason. I only use nitrites for my brisket that I cure for corned beef which is not heated to the extreme and therefore no nitrosamines.  When I cure pork belly, my salt & sugar values will be sufficient to ward off any undesireable organisms but the major concern here is the Botulism forming bacteria under anaerobic curing. I don't worry about that either because if botulism is formed, 100C (212F) will destroy any botulism "toxin". Nitrites give the bacon a nice redish pink colour that is desired.  I go for taste and not appearance when it comes to bacon. I'm not trying to convince you to not use nitrites but it is always best to be careful and use the nitrites. 


post #3 of 5
Not arguing about nitrosamines formation (although there are ways to minimize that when cooking bacon).

However you cannot make bacon without sodium (potasium) nitrite. It will be tasty but it will not taste like bacon.
post #4 of 5

Bacon "taste" is on the tongue of the beholder. 

post #5 of 5
I think bacon taste is a taste most people know and expect when eating something called bacon.

I am all against unecessay use of nitrites and most of my dry cured meats are not done with nitrites. I even make a cold cut from belly - without nitrite. It's good and we eat it all the time but not instead of bacon.

I respect your choice, i just disagree with the statement "taste just like bacon".

Also , keep in mind nitrosamines form as well from meat amines and nitrite in the stomach acidic environment not just at high temps.
Edited by atomicsmoke - 9/6/17 at 6:44am
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