The effect of agricultural production system on the meat quality of Dorper lambs

Claasen, Claasen (2008-03)

Thesis (MScAgric)--Stellenbosch University, 2008.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of South African production system (feedlot {FL-} or free-range {FR-}) and gender (ewes, rams or castrates) on growth and carcass characteristics of Dorper sheep. Male lambs (castrates and rams) grew twice as fast as ewes (P<0.05) under FL-conditions while much smaller differences were observed between gender groups in FR-lambs. FL-lambs produced heavier carcasses (P=0.0003) with higher dressing percentages (P<0.05) and greater carcass fatness levels (P<0.052) than FR- lambs. No differences attributable to production system were found on meat tenderness (as indicated by Warner Bratzler shear force strength) and on the intramuscular lipid concentration. In contrast, sensory evaluation results suggested that meat from FL-lambs was juicier and more tender than meat from FR-lambs. The sensory panel could not distinguish between FL and FR meat as far as the attributes of aroma and flavour were concerned. Cholesterol results indicated that for intermuscular fat, higher cholesterol levels were observed for FL-lambs than for FR-lambs. The level of palmitic acid (C16:0) was significantly higher (P=0.0375) in the Longissimus dorsi (LD) muscles of FL-lambs. For intramuscular fat from the Biceps femoris (BF) muscle, g-linolenic acid (C18:3n-6) was higher (P<0.0001) in FL- lambs. Results for intramuscular BF further indicated that ram lambs had the highest (P=0.0019) palmitic acid (C16:0) and sum of TUFA (P=0.0014), castrates had the highest (P=0.0260) α-linolenic acid (C18:3n-3) and g-linolenic acid (C18:3n-6), while ewe lambs had the highest (P=0.0014) SFA concentrations. Linoleic acid (C18:2n-6c) was significantly higher (P=0.0067) in the subcutaneous fat of FL-lambs while FR-lambs had more linolenic acid (C18:3n-3). For the kidney fat, FR-feeding increased (P < 0.05) stearic (C18:0), linolelaidic (C18:2n-6t), α-linolenic (C18:3n-3) and homo-g-linolenic acid (C20:3n-6) percentages. Conversely, linoleic acid (C18:2n-6c) was increased (P=0.0372) by FL-feeding. For the intermuscular fat, FR-lambs had higher linolenic acid (C18:3n-3) and SFA (P=0.0113 and P=0.0341) compared to FL-lambs. On the other hand, the sum of TUFA for the intermuscular fat was higher (P=0.0341) in FL-lambs compared to FR-lambs. Results from the study imply that the consumer may not necessarily be able to discern between meat from FR- or FL-lambs, although they may possibly discriminate against the increase in visible fatness of FL-lambs. No clear advantage of production system in terms of human health could be demonstrated as far as the proximate chemical composition and the fatty acid composition of the meat was concerned. The faster growth and the associated shorter production cycle of FL-lambs could be an advantage under certain production systems. However, it needs to be weighed against the cost of concentrate feeding and the preference consumers are likely to develop for lamb produced in natural environments.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Die doel van die studie was om Suid Afrikaanse produksiestelsel (voerkraal {VK-} of veld {VD}) en geslag (ooie, hamels of ramme) op die groeivermoë en karkaseienskappe van die Dorperskape te bepaal. Manlike lammers (ramme and hamels) het twee keer vinniger (P<0.05) as ooilammers onder VK-toestande gegroei, terwyl kleiner verskille tussen geslagsgroepe by VD-diere waargeneem is. VK-lammers het swaarder karkasse (P=0.0003), hoër uitslagpersentasies (P<0.05) en meer karkas vet (P<0.052) as VD -lammers vertoon. Geen verskille as gevolg van produksiestelsel is op die sagtheid van vleis (soos aangedui deur Warner-Bratzler skeurkragwaardes) en die binnespierse vetinhoud gevind nie. Daarenteen het sensoriese analises aangedui dat vleis van VK-lammers sappiger en sagter as vleis van VD- lammers was. Die sensoriese paneel kon nie verskille aangaande die aroma en geur van vleis tussen VK- en VD-vleis onderskei nie. Cholesterolvlakke was hoër vir VK-lammers as by VD-lammers. Die vlak van palmitiese suur (C16:0) was hoër (P=0.0375) in die Longissimus dorsi (LD) spier van VK-lammers. Vir binnespierse vet van die Biceps femoris (BF) spier was g-linoleniese suur (C18:3n-6) hoër (P<0.0001) in VK-lammers. Resultate vir binnespierse vet van die BF spier het verder bewys dat ramlammers die hoogste (P=0.0019) palmitiese suur (C16:0) and totale onversadigde vetsure (P = 0.0014) getoon het, hamels die hoogste (P=0.0260) α-linoleniese suur (C18:3n-3) en g-linolenese suur (C18:3n-6) getoon het terwyl ooilammers die hoogste (P=0.0014) versadigde vetsuurvlakke getoon het. Linoliese suur (C18:2n-6c) was hoër (P=0.0067) in die onderhuidse vet van VK-lammers terwyl VD-lammers meer linoliese suur (C18:3n-3) gehad het. Resultate vir niervet het getoon dat VD-voeding die persentasies van steariese (C18:0), linoleladiese (C18:2n-6t), α-linoleniese (C18:3n-3) and homo-g-linoleniese suur (C20:3n-6) verhoog (P<0.05) het relatief tot VK-voeding. Linoliese suur (C18:2n-6c) is deur VK-voeding verhoog (P=0.0372). Vir intermuskulêre vet het VD-lammers hoër linoleniese suur (C18:3n-3) en versadigde vetsure (P=0.0113 en P=0.0341) as VK-lammers gehad. Die totale onversadigde vetsure vir tussenspiere vet was hoër (P=0.0341) in VK-lammers in vergelyking met VD-lammers. Resultate van hierdie studie dui daarop dat verbruikers nie noodwendig tussen vleis van VD- en VK-lammers sal onderskei nie, alhoewel hulle dalk teen die sigbaar vetter vleis van VK-lammers kan diskrimineer. Geen definitiewe voordeel in terme van menslike gesondheid kon op grond van die chemiese samestelling van die vleis bevestig word nie. Vinniger groei van VK-lammers, en die korter produksiesiklus wat daarmee verband hou, mag onder sekere produksie stelsels ʼn voordeel wees. Die voordeel moet teen die hoër koste van VK-voeding en die voorkeur van verbruikers vir lam produksie in natuurlike omgewing opgeweeg word.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/19896
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