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Carcass Traits Determining Quality and Yield Grades of Hanwoo Steers

  • Moon, S.S. (Meat Science Laboratory, Division of Animal Science, Gyeongsang National University) ;
  • Hwang, I.H. (National Livestock Research Institute) ;
  • Jin, S.K. (Department of International Livestock Industry, Jinju National University) ;
  • Lee, J.G. (Meat Science Laboratory, Division of Animal Science, Gyeongsang National University) ;
  • Joo, S.T. (Meat Science Laboratory, Division of Animal Science, Gyeongsang National University) ;
  • Park, G.B. (Meat Science Laboratory, Division of Animal Science, Gyeongsang National University)
  • Received : 2002.08.20
  • Accepted : 2003.02.28
  • Published : 2003.07.01

Abstract

A group of Hanwoo (Korean cattle) steers (n=14,386) was sampled from a commercial abattoir located in Seoul over one year period (spring, summer, autumn and winter) and their carcass traits were collected. Carcass traits assessed by an official meat grader comprised degree of marbling, meat color, fat color, texture and maturity for quality grade, and back fat thickness, ribeye area and carcass weight for yield grade. A heavier carcass with a higher marbling score, more red meat color and white fat color received better quality grade (p<0.05). Regression analysis showed that the marbling score was the strongest attribute (partial $R^2=0.88$) for quality grade. Lighter carcasses with a thinner back fat and larger ribeye area received higher yield grade score. The back fat thickness was the most negative determinant of yield grade (Partial $R^2=-0.66$). The slaughter season had a little effect on quality and yield grades. As slaughter weight increased, back fat thickness and ribeye area increased linearly, whereas marbling score reached its asymptotic level at approximately 570 kg. As a consequence, quality grade showed a considerable improvement up to 570 kg, but increases in slaughter weight afterward showed a little benefit on quality grade. There was a clear curvilinear relationship between slaughter weight and yield grade in that the yield grade reached its highest point at approximately 490 kg and decreased afterward. These results suggested that 570kg at the age of 24 months might be the economic slaughter weight for quality grade but 490 kg for yield grade.

Acknowledgement

Supported by : Korea Science and Engineering Foundation (KOSEF)

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