National Beef Quality Audit-2011: Harvest-floor assessments of targeted characteristics that affect quality and value of cattle, carcasses, and byproducts, Academic Article uri icon

abstract

  • The National Beef Quality Audit-2011 (NBQA-2011) was conducted to assess targeted characteristics on the harvest floor that affect the quality and value of cattle, carcasses, and byproducts. Survey teams evaluated approximately 18,000 cattle/carcasses between May and November 2011 in 8 beef processing facilities. Cattle identification methods were lot visual tags (85.7%), individual visual tags (50.6%), electronic tags (20.1%), metal-clip tags (15.7%), other (5.3%), none (2.5%), and wattles (0.5%). Hide colors or breed types were black (61.1%), red (12.8%), yellow (8.7%), Holstein (5.5%), brown (5.0%), gray (5.0%), white (1.4%), and brindle (1.0%). Brand frequencies were none (55.2%), 1 (40.4%), 2 (4.4%), and 3 or more (0.04%) brands, and brands were located on the butt (35.2%), side (9.0%), and shoulder (2.5%). Hide locations of mud or manure were no mud/manure (49.2%), legs (36.8%), belly (23.7%), side (14.9%), top-line (11.0%), and tail region (13.7%). There were 76.2% of cattle without horns, and the majority of those with horns (71.6%) were between 0 cm and 12.7 cm in length. Permanent incisor numbers were zero (87.3%), 1 (1.4%), 2 (8.0%), 3 (0.9%), 4 (1.9%), 5 (0.3%), 6 (0.2%), 7 (0.1%), and 8 (0.02%). Most carcasses (77.0%) were not bruised, 18.7% had 1 bruise, 3.4% had 2 bruises, 0.6% had 3 bruises, and 0.3% had more than 3 bruises. Bruise locations were loin (50.1%), rib (21.3%), chuck (13.8%), round (7.3%), and brisket/flank/plate (7.5%). Condemnation item and incidence were whole carcass (none recorded), liver (20.9%), lungs (17.3%), tongue (10.0%), viscera (9.3%), and head (7.2%). Compared with the NBQA-2005, the NBQA-2011 had an increased percentage of black-hided cattle (56.3 vs. 61.1%), more cattle with brands (38.7 vs. 44.8%), and more cattle with some form of identification (93.3 vs. 97.5%). In addition, there was a lesser percentage of carcasses with bruising in 2011 (23.0%) than in 2005 (35.2%), as well as a smaller percentage of carcasses with more than 1 bruise (2005 = 9.4% vs. 2011 = 4.2%). Compared with the 2005 audit, a similar percentage of the cattle were deemed 30 mo of age or older using dentition (2005 = 2.7% vs. 2011 = 3.3%). The information from NBQA-2011 helps the beef industry measure progress against previous NBQA assessments and provides a benchmark for future educational and research activities.

altmetric score

  • 1

author list (cited authors)

  • McKeith, R. O., Gray, G. D., Hale, D. S., Kerth, C. R., Griffin, D. B., Savell, J. W., ... O'Connor, M. E.

citation count

  • 29

publication date

  • September 2012