Meat and Muscle Biology Journal Update

Dec 04, 2019

Meat and Muscle Biology Journal Update
Elisabeth Huff-Lonergan, Ph.D. - Editor-in-Chief 

Great things have been happening with your journal over the past few months!  First, the article count for the journal is steadily increasing. Volume 1 (2017) had 25 articles, Volume 2 (2018) had 36 articles, and I am very happy to report that Volume 3 (2019) is closing and that we will have at least 44 total published articles! The momentum for this year is really striking when you realize that 34 of these were submitted within a 6 month period - after May 1.  Issue 4 (2020) is off to a great start with at least 3 accepted articles already!   Your journal is steadily growing and, in fact, is gaining momentum. As the journal hits its stride, other metrics are also moving in a positive direction. We have reduced the average time to decision for accepted manuscripts to 33 days - staying under our target of less than 35 days. Our current rejection rate is approximately 20%, a healthy place for us to be at this age of the journal.  Thank you to the entire AMSA community for all of the various ways you have supported the journal by submitting articles, reviewing manuscripts, reading the journal and by promoting it with your colleagues.  Please keep up the good work. The journal is not just for the academic members of the community – it is how we share cutting edge work that can be put to use by the entire meat science community.  The value of Meat and Muscle Biology is far reaching and permeates who we are as the scientific voice of the meat science community.

There are some big changes that are about to happen for the journal. As you are all well aware, at RMC this year we announced that our publisher, ACSESS, is ending their publishing service effective December 31 of this year. That gave us essentially less than 5 months to find a new publishing partner. Normally, this process would take at least 1 – 2 years. The associate editor of the journal, Surendranath Suman, and I as editor-in-chief, have been working diligently over this summer to investigate the possibilities with several publishers. At the October meeting of the AMSA board of directors, I, as editor-in-chief, presented the viable options that we had. Of those presented, the board directed me to work with Iowa State University Digital Press to publish our journal. The Iowa State University Digital Press is run by the Iowa State University Library. The ISU Library has a long history of providing digital publishing solutions to clients both within and outside of Iowa State University. Because of their many successes in providing these services, they have started a new initiative and have expanded into Open Access Journal publishing for societies. Image Iowa State University Digital Press is committed to providing smaller societies whose disciplinary focus is reflected at Iowa State University a low-cost/high quality open access publishing option. This is part of a broader commitment of the Iowa State University Library to support professional societies who wish to transition their journals or start new journals as open access publications. We are their first society journal to host. The ISU Digital Press is very excited to be able to partner with us and is positioning us to be their flagship journal. I have been working closely with ISU Digital Press as they set up the submission and journal management site. ACSESS has been working with ISU Digital Press to migrate our published works to ISU Digital Press. The journal will begin accepting submissions through the new site (https://www.iastatedigitalpress.com/mmb/) on December 1. Working with ISU Digital Press has several distinct advantages to us as a society. Since we are their first society journal and their flagship journal, they are dedicated to working hard with us to grow the journal to be the premier journal in our field. Because they are part of a University library that is cognizant of the costs of publishing that are incurred by researchers, they are dedicated to keeping the costs as low as possible. Therefore, their pricing structure has allowed us to significantly reduce the APC (Article Processing Charge – cost to publish) to authors. We are now able to have an APC of $850 for members of the AMSA to publish in the journal. The charge for non-members has been reduced to $1000. These APCs represent a substantial decrease from the $1200 APC for AMSA members and $1500 for non-AMSA members to publish in the journal.

Other news is that the journal will be publishing the review articles for the 2020 International Congress of Meat Science and Technology/Reciprocal Meat Conference in a special issue of Meat and Muscle Biology.  Anna Dilger is working hard on that issue as a special guest editor.  These review articles are typically widely read and highly cited.  This is a fantastic opportunity for the journal to be showcased to an international audience!

This is a new and exciting era for the journal and for AMSA. I am looking forward to the future of the journal and am highly pleased with how it is going! Thanks to all of you for your continued support of Meat and Muscle Biology The future of the journal looks great!

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