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Correlations among Stress Parameters, Meat and Carcass Quality Parameters in Pigs

  • Dokmanovic, Marija (Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Belgrade) ;
  • Baltic, Milan Z. (Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Belgrade) ;
  • Duric, Jelena (Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Belgrade) ;
  • Ivanovic, Jelena (Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Belgrade) ;
  • Popovic, Ljuba (Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management) ;
  • Todorovic, Milica (Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Belgrade) ;
  • Markovic, Radmila (Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Belgrade) ;
  • Pantic, Srdan (Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Belgrade)
  • Received : 2014.04.30
  • Accepted : 2014.09.05
  • Published : 2015.03.01

Abstract

Relationships among different stress parameters (lairage time and blood level of lactate and cortisol), meat quality parameters (initial and ultimate pH value, temperature, drip loss, sensory and instrumental colour, marbling) and carcass quality parameters (degree of rigor mortis and skin damages, hot carcass weight, carcass fat thickness, meatiness) were determined in pigs (n = 100) using Pearson correlations. After longer lairage, blood lactate (p<0.05) and degree of injuries (p<0.001) increased, meat became darker (p<0.001), while drip loss decreased (p<0.05). Higher lactate was associated with lower initial pH value (p<0.01), higher temperature (p<0.001) and skin blemishes score (p<0.05) and more developed rigor mortis (p<0.05), suggesting that lactate could be a predictor of both meat quality and the level of preslaughter stress. Cortisol affected carcass quality, so higher levels of cortisol were associated with increased hot carcass weight, carcass fat thickness on the back and at the sacrum and marbling, but also with decreased meatiness. The most important meat quality parameters (pH and temperature after 60 minutes) deteriorated when blood lactate concentration was above 12 mmol/L.

Acknowledgement

Grant : Selected biological hazards to the safety/quality of food of animal origin and the control measures from farm to consumer

Supported by : Ministry of Education and Science,

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