Phenotypic ranges and relationships among carcass and meat palatability traits for fourteen cattle breeds, and heritabilities and expected progeny differences for Warner-Bratzler shear force in three beef cattle breeds. Academic Article uri icon


  • Carcass and Warner-Bratzler shear force (WBSF) data from strip loin steaks were obtained from 7,179 progeny of Angus, Brahman, Brangus, Charolais, Gelbvieh, Hereford, Limousin, Maine-Anjou, Red Angus, Salers, Shorthorn, Simbrah, Simmental, and South Devon sires. Trained sensory panel (TSP) evaluations were obtained on 2,320 steaks sampled from contemporary groups of progeny from one to five sires of each breed. Expected progeny differences for marbling and WBSF were developed for 103 Simmental sires from 1,295 progeny, 23 Shorthorn sires from 310 progeny, and 69 Hereford sires from 1,457 progeny. Pooled phenotypic residual correlations, including all progeny, showed that marbling was lowly correlated with WBSF (-0.21) and with TSP overall tenderness (0.18). The residual correlation between WBSF and TSP tenderness was -0.68, whereas residual correlations for progeny sired by the three Bos indicus breeds were only slightly different than for progeny sired by Bos taurus breeds. The phenotypic range of mean WBSF among sires across breeds was 6.27 kg, and the phenotypic range among breed means was 3.93 kg. Heritability estimates for fat thickness, marbling score, WBSF, and TSP tenderness, juiciness, and flavor were 0.19, 0.68, 0.40, 0.37, 0.46, and 0.07, respectively. Ranges in EPD for WBSF and marbling were -0.41 to +0.26 kg and +0.48 to -0.22, respectively, for Simmentals; -0.41 to +0.36 kg and 0.00 to -0.32, respectively, for Shorthorns; and -0.48 to +0.22 kg and +0.40 to -0.24, respectively, for Herefords. More than 20% of steaks were unacceptable in tenderness. Results of this study demonstrated that 1) selection for marbling would result in little improvement in meat tenderness; 2) heritability of marbling, tenderness, and juiciness are high; and 3) sufficient variation exists in WBSF EPD among widely used Simmental, Shorthorn, and Hereford sires to allow for genetic improvement in LM tenderness.

published proceedings

  • J Anim Sci

altmetric score

  • 0.5

author list (cited authors)

  • Dikeman, M. E., Pollak, E. J., Zhang, Z., Moser, D. W., Gill, C. A., & Dressler, E. A.

citation count

  • 56

complete list of authors

  • Dikeman, ME||Pollak, EJ||Zhang, Z||Moser, DW||Gill, CA||Dressler, EA

publication date

  • October 2005