HPP (High Pressure Processing) is a USDA-approved process that uses safe, natural water pressure to eliminate potential pathogens and food spoilage organisms in a variety of foods, including meat.

When a product is put through high pressure processing, water pressure is instantly and uniformly applied around the package.

Similarly, in meat processing, intense, carefully-monitored pressure is applied equally from all directions. This uniform pressure ensures the meat’s structure, texture, flavor, nutritional value and performance are unaffected. Meanwhile the intense water pressure effectively disrupts the living pathogens and spoilage organisms within the meat — essentially eliminating all the harmful organisms within the sealed package. And since no additional preservatives have been added, the natural flavor of the meat is untainted.

See the Basics of the HPP Process

Common Questions About HPP

  • How long has HPP been used in food processing?

    The origins of using water pressure to eliminate spoilage organisms go back at least 100 years. However, HPP on a large scale only became economically feasible in the last couple of decades, due to advancements in large-scale equipment and technologies. (Hormel Foodservice began investing in our own HPP equipment and technologies in 2005.)

    Hormel Foodservice uses our High Pressure Process on as many products as possible to ensure customers are getting the safest and best-tasting meats possible.

  • Why does Hormel Foodservice use HPP?

    High Pressure Processing is becoming increasingly common. Hormel Foodservice began applying HPP to meat processing in 2005 — and now many other meat manufacturers have followed our lead. Because HPP is so effective at increasing food safety, while eliminating the need for chemical preservatives, it seems only logical that the increase in HPP usage will continue to climb.

  • Which pathogens and food spoilage organisms will HPP be effective against?

    HPP is particularly effective against:

    • Listeria / Listeria monocytogenes
    • E. Coli
    • Salmonella
    • Other pathogens and foodborne spoilage organisms typically found in deli meats
  • Do chemical preservatives measure up to HPP?

    Chemical preservatives only slow the growth of pathogens that cause foodborne illness and spoilage. HPP safely and naturally eliminates these same pathogens.