Evaluation of carcass characteristics of Bos indicus and tropically adapted Bos taurus breeds selected for postweaning weight.
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Data from 9 studies were compiled to evaluate the effects of 20 yr of selection for postweaning weight (PWW) on carcass characteristics and meat quality in experimental herds of control Nellore (NeC) and selected Nellore (NeS), Caracu (CaS), Guzerah (GuS), and Gir (GiS) breeds. These studies were conducted with animals from a genetic selection program at the Experimental Station of Sertozinho, So Paulo State, Brazil. After the performance test (168 d postweaning), bulls (n = 490) from the calf crops born between 1992 and 2000 were finished and slaughtered to evaluate carcass traits and meat quality. Treatments were different across studies. A meta-analysis was conducted with a random coefficients model in which herd was considered a fixed effect and treatments within year and year were considered as random effects. Either calculated maturity degree or initial BW was used interchangeably as the covariate, and least squares means were used in the multiple-comparison analysis. The CaS and NeS had heavier (P = 0.002) carcasses than the NeC and GiS; GuS were intermediate. The CaS had the longest carcass (P < 0.001) and heaviest spare ribs (P < 0.001), striploin (P < 0.001), and beef plate (P = 0.013). Although the body, carcass, and quarter weights of NeS were similar to those of CaS, NeS had more edible meat in the leg region than did CaS bulls. Selection for PWW increased rib-eye area in Nellore bulls. Selected Caracu had the lowest (most favorable) shear force values compared with the NeS (P = 0.003), NeC (P = 0.005), GuS (P = 0.003), and GiS (P = 0.008). Selection for PWW increased body, carcass, and meat retail weights in the Nellore without altering dressing percentage and body fat percentage.