Gender status effect on carcass and meat quality traits of feedlot Angus × Nellore cattle

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2019-01-01

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The study evaluated the effect of gender status on carcass and meat quality of feedlot Angus × Nellore cattle. A total of 176 cattle, 20 months old, were confined for 190-days and assigned to four treatments: bulls, immunocastrated, steers, and heifers. Bulls had greater rib eye area and HCW (p = 0.0001). Heifers had increased fat thickness (p = 0.0001). Steers and heifers had higher marbling scores (p = 0.0001). There was interaction between gender and aging time for Warner-Bratzler Shear Force (p = 0.0002), L* (p = 0.0118), and b* (p = 0.0113) values of beef. The sensory panel results showed that beef from bulls had the lowest consumer overall acceptance (p = 0.0278). Especially, regardless tenderness, steers and immunocastrated beef were considered tender, independent of aging time. Beef produced by heifers, steers, and immunocastrated is considered to be of higher quality than bulls. Thus, it is may be an interesting alternative to produce high-quality beef than bulls, to attend the consumer demand for high-quality products. Additionally, the low fatty acids n6 levels and low n6:n3 ratio, high levels of CLA, MUFAs, and oleic acid suggests that the heifer meat is favorable for human health.

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Animal Science Journal, v. 90, n. 8, p. 1078-1089, 2019.

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