Characterization of cutability and palatability attributes among different slaughter groups of beef cattle.
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Fifteen slaughter cattle from five groups (Charolais crossbred bulls, Brahman crossbred steers, Holstein steers, mixed-Exotic crossbred heifers and Hereford-Angus crossbred steers) were randomly selected from a commercial feedlot. Time-on-feed was 108, 114, 102, 108 and 145 days for the aforementioned groups, respectively. Carcasses from Charolais crossbred bulls had the highest percentage yield of chuck and round, but the lowest percentage yield of loin; hereford-Angus crossbred steers had the lowest percentage yield of round and Holstein steers had the lowest percentage yield of rib. Carcasses from Charolais crossbred bulls had the highest percentage yield of major retail-ready subprimals and lean trim, Hereford-Angus crossbred steers had the highest percentage yield of fat trim and Holstein steers had the highest percentage yield of bone from the major wholesale cuts. Mean percentage yields of closely trimmed, boneless retail cuts were highest for carcasses from the bulls and lowest for carcasses from the Hereford-Angus steers. Although Holstein steer carcasses had less fat trim than Brahman-crossbred steers mixed-Exotic heifers, this advantage was largely offset by their higher percentage of bone. Loin steaks from carcasses of Charolais crossbred bulls, Holstein, mixed-Exotic heifers were comparable (P > 005)with those of Hereford-Angus steers for shear force and sensory panel tenderness ratings. However, loin steaks from carcasses of Brahman-crossbred steers had significantly higher (P < 005) shear force values (least tender) and lower (P < 005) tenderness and overall palatability ratings. No diffeerences (P > 005) were found for flavor desirability of loin steaks among any of the groups. For bottom round steaks, Hereford-Angus steers received the highest palatability ratings while those from Holstein steers received the lowest palatability ratings.