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Effects of small ruminant species and origin in Ethiopia (Highland vs. Lowland areas) and lengths of rest and feeding on harvest measures

G. Abebe, G. Kannan, and A.L. Goetsch

Journal of Animal Science 87(E-Supplement 2):479. 2009

Yearling goats (G) and sheep (S) from Highland (H) and Lowland (L) areas of Ethiopia were used to determine effects of species and origin and lengths of rest and feeding on harvest measures, particularly carcass surface lightness. The H goat used was Arsi-Bale, and the L goat was Somali. The fat-tail indigenous H sheep is thought to be an Arsi-Bale genotype, and the fat-rump indigenous L sheep genotype was the Black Head Ogaden. There were two experiments (each a 2 x 2 x 3 factorial), one with rest for 0, 1, and 2 d before slaughter (R0, R2, and R3, respectively) and the second with feeding 0, 2, and 4 wk (0 wk = 2 d rest; 0F, 2F, and 4F, respectively). There were 10 animals per treatment. In the rest experiment, pH of the longissimus dorsi muscle 1 d post-slaughter (PS) was 5.91, 6.29, 5.82, and 5.98 (SEM = 0.039) for G-H, G-L, S-H, and S-L, respectively. The instrumental color measure L* (indicating lightness) for the hind leg surface 3 d PS was lower (P < 0.05) for H than for L (34.8, 36.3, 37.4, and 38.9 for G-H, G-L, S-H, and S-L, respectively; SEM = 0.45). Surface L* on d 3 was increased (P < 0.05) by 1 and 2 d of rest compared with 0 d for goats regardless of origin, but was not affected for sheep (33.2, 36.3, 37.2, 38.5, 37.8, and 38.2 for G-R0, G-R1, G-R2, S-R0, S-R1, and S-R2, respectively; SEM = 0.56). Longissimus muscle pH on d 1 PS was 5.93, 5.97, 5.85, and 5.74 for G-H, G-L, S-H, and S-L, respectively (SEM = 0.036). Surface L* on d 3 was lower (P < 0.05) for H vs. L (36.5, 39.0, 36.2, and 39.8 for G-H, G-L, S-H, and S-L, respectively; SEM = 0.46). Feeding 4 wk increased (P < 0.05) surface L* on d 3 regardless of species and origin (37.7, 36.8, and 39.2 for F0, F2, and F4, respectively; SEM = 0.40). In summary, goat and sheep carcasses from Highland areas of Ethiopia may darken more quickly compared with Lowland areas, and 1 or 2 d of rest before slaughter can increase lightness of the surface of goat carcasses.


 

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