This study aimed to evaluate the effects of osmotic dehydration sheet (ODS) packaging on the quality parameters of beef biceps femoris muscle samples stored at 4 degrees C for 0, 1, 3 and 7 days. Quality indices such as Hunter color values L*, a* and b*, the percentage of metmyoglobin (Met-Mb%), K value (freshness index), and the contents of adenosine triphosphate (ATP)-related compounds (ARCs), thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBA-RS) and volatile basic nitrogen (VBN) were measured. ODS gave lower a* and b* values and lower Met-Mb% compared with control samples wrapped in polyvinylidene chloride film (PVDCF) (P < 0.01), but had no effect on L*(P < 0.01). As a result, with higher levels of osmotic dehydration produced by the ODS, the percentage of weight loss and the total contents of ARCs and inosine monophosphate of the samples also increased (P < 0.05). The K values of ODS samples were also significantly lower than PVDCF-wrapped samples (P < 0.05). Low performance ODS wrapping reduced the TBA-RS values below those found with PVDCF and high performance ODS processing (P < 0.01). Moreover, the use of ODS had no effect on VBN values. Thus, although the bright red of beef samples changed to a dark purple color and the weights of samples decreased, the ODS approach has potential as a tool for decreasing the deterioration of other quality indices such as Met-Mb%, TBA-RS, ARCs, K values and the VBN content of cold-stored beef. (c) 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.