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Quality meats from Merinos

Warner, R.D., Dunshea, F.R., Ponnampalam, E.N., Ferguson, D.M., Gardner, G.ORCID: 0000-0001-7499-9986, Martin, K.M., Salvatore, L., Hopkins, D.L. and Pethick, D.W.ORCID: 0000-0002-3255-7677 (2006) Quality meats from Merinos. International Journal of Sheep and Wool Science, 54 (2). pp. 48-53.

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Consistent high-quality lamb products are required to maintain consumer confidence and consumption. We conducted studies to compare the meat quality traits of Merinos with those of first- and second-cross lambs. There is great diversity within the Merino genotype, particularly with regard to wool fibre diameter, which complicates generalisations. However, studies of the quality of meat from Merinos were unanimous in that Merinos produce meat that rates highly in terms of flavour, tenderness and overall acceptability. In one study, the retail display-life of loin meat from Merinos was inferior; high pH has been a consistent problem with Merino meat for a number of years. The prevalence of high-pH meat can be minimised by on-farm concentrate feeding, increasing the plane of nutrition of pasture-fed lambs prior to consignment, using sires with a high estimated breeding value for muscling, minimising stress factors between farm and slaughter and using sires with low agitation scores. The retail display-life of meat from Merinos can be improved by reducing the prevalence of high pH meat and using sires with a high estimated breeding value for muscling.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): Australian Sheep Industry CRC
School of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences
Publisher: University of New England
Copyright: © 2006 The Australian Sheep Industry CRC
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