Improving tenderness in beef cuts

There are a number of commercially available DNA tests for beef tenderness that effectively identify differences in ribeye tenderness related to post-mortem aging. Unfortunately, the beef cuts that need the most improvement are those that are tough due to connective tissue, which does not respond to aging. Additionally, there are theoretical concerns that selecting for feed efficiency may reduce beef tenderness.

Research currently underway and funded by the National Check-off and Canada’s Beef Science Cluster is working to gain a better understanding of the genetic factors underlying differences in tenderness among different muscles.

This is an important Continue reading

Understanding dark cutters to reduce prevalence

Dark cutting is a stress-associated condition that causes beef to have an unacceptable colour and shorter shelf life. Dark cutting, which is most common during the hottest months of the year, significantly reduces carcass value. It has become more prevalent in recent years.

Research currently underway, funded by the National Check-off and Canada’s Beef Science Cluster, is working to determine whether dark-cutting carcasses are produced by animal management factors, and whether the ribeye muscle metabolism of dark-cutting carcasses is different than that of normal carcasses. This research builds on work funded under the first Cluster. Continue reading