Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home

Feed deprivation in Merino and Terminal sired lambs: (2) the metabolic response under pre-slaughter conditions and impact on meat quality and carcass yield

  • S. M. Stewart (a1), P. McGilchrist (a2), G. E. Gardner (a1) and D. W. Pethick (a1)

Abstract

Under current Australian industry pre-slaughter guidelines, lambs may be off feed for up to 48 h before slaughter. The purpose of this study was to examine what proportion of circulating metabolites at slaughter are due to stress and feed deprivation and if this response differs between Merino and Terminal genotypes. In addition the effect of feed deprivation on carcass weight and meat quality was examined. Jugular blood samples were collected from 88 Merino and Terminal sired lambs at rest and at slaughter following 24, 36 and 48 h of feed deprivation and plasma analysed for glucose, lactate, non-esterified fatty acids (NEFA) and β-hydroxybutyrate (BHOB). From the same carcasses hot carcass weight (HCWT) were measured as well as a suite of meat quality traits measured such as M. longissimus lumborum (loin) and M. semitendinosus pH at 24 h postmortem. Loin samples were also analysed for intramuscular fat content and Warner–Bratzer Shear Force. Merino sired lambs had a higher NEFA response compared to Terminal sired lambs at slaughter after 24, 36 and 48 h of feed deprivation, with NEFA levels up to 35% higher than previously reported in the same animals at rest in animal house conditions, whereas BHOB response to feed deprivation was not affected by sire type (P>0.05) and similar to previously reported at rest. In addition to the metabolic effects, increasing feed deprivation from 36 h was associated with a 3% reduction in HCWT and dressing percentage as well as causing increased ultimate pH in the M. semitendinosus in Merino sired lambs. Findings from this study demonstrate that Merino and Terminal sired lambs differ in their metabolic response to feed deprivation under commercial slaughter conditions. In addition, commercial feed deprivation appears to have a negative effect on ultimate pH and carcass weight and warrants further investigation.

Copyright

Corresponding author

References

Hide All
Anderson, F, Williams, A, Pannier, L, Pethick, DW and Gardner, GE 2015. Sire carcass breeding values affect body composition in lambs — 1. Effects on lean weight and its distribution within the carcass as measured by computed tomography. Meat Science 108, 145154.
Anonymous 2005. Handbook of Australian meat International red meat manual, 4th edition. AUSMEAT, Sydney, Australia.
Bassett, J 1970. Metabolic effects of catecholamines in sheep. Australian Journal of Biological Sciences 23, 903914.
Boisclair, YR, Johnston, KB, Bauman, DE, Crooker, BA, Dunshea, FR and Bell, AW 1997. Paradoxical increases of circulating non-esterified fatty acids in somatotropin treated cattle undergoing mild disturbances. Domestic Animal Endocrinology 14, 251262.
Bray, A, Graafhuis, A and Chrystall, B 1989. The cumulative effect of nutritional, shearing and pre-slaughter washing stresses on the quality of lamb meat. Meat Science 25, 5967.
Brockman, RP and Laarveld, B 1986. Hormonal regulation of metabolism in ruminants; a review. Livestock Production Science 14, 313334.
Butterfield, RM 1988. New concept of sheep growth. University of Sydney, Sydney, NSW, Australia.
Cameron, N 1992. Correlated physiological responses to selection for carcass lean content in sheep. Livestock Production Science 30, 5368.
Carr, TR, Allen, DM and Phar, P 1971. Effect of pre-slaughter fasting on bovine carcass yield and quality. Journal of Animal Science 32, 870873.
Chilliard, Y, Ferlay, A, Faulconnier, Y, Bonnet, M, Rouel, J and Bocquier, F 2000. Adipose tissue metabolism and its role in adaptations to undernutrition in ruminants. Proceedings of the Nutrition Society 59, 127134.
Daly, BL, Gardner, GE, Ferguson, DM and Thompson, JM 2006. The effect of time off feed prior to slaughter on muscle glycogen metabolism and rate of pH decline in three different muscles of stimulated and non-stimulated sheep carcasses. Australian Journal of Agricultural Research 57, 12291235.
Ferguson, DM and Warner, RD 2008. Have we underestimated the impact of pre-slaughter stress on meat quality in ruminants? Meat Science 80, 1219.
Fogarty, NM, Banks, RG, van de Werf, JHJ, Ball, AJ and Gibson, JP 2007. The information nucleus – a new concept to enhance sheep industry genetic improvement. In Proceedings of the 17th Association for Advancement of Animal Breeding and Genetics, 6–12 April 2007, Armidale, NSW, Australia, pp. 29–32.
Gardner, G, Kennedy, L, Milton, J and Pethick, D 1999. Glycogen metabolism and ultimate pH of muscle in Merino, first-cross, and second-cross wether lambs as affected by stress before slaughter. Australian Journal of Agricultural Research 50, 175182.
Gardner, GE, Hopkins, DL, Greenwood, PL, Cake, MA, Boyce, MD and Pethick, DW 2007. Sheep genotype, age and muscle type affect the expression of metabolic enzyme markers. Australian Journal of Experimental Agriculture 47, 11801189.
Greenwood, P, Gardner, G and Hegarty, R 2006. Lamb myofibre characteristics are influenced by sire estimated breeding values and pastoral nutritional system. Australian Journal of Agricultural Research 57, 627639.
Harris, RA 1992. Carbohydrate metabolism I: major metabolic pathways and their control. In Textbook of biochemistry: with clinical correlations (ed. TM Devlin), pp. 291358. Wiley-Liss, New York, NY, USA.
Hocquette, JF, Ortigues-Marty, I, Pethick, D, Herpin, P and Fernandez, X 1998. Nutritional and hormonal regulation of energy metabolism in skeletal muscles of meat-producing animals. Livestock Production Science 56, 115143.
Hopkins, DL, Toohey, ES, Warner, RD, Kerr, MJ and van de Ven, R 2010. Measuring the shear force of lamb meat cooked from frozen samples: comparison of two laboratories. Animal Production Science 50, 382385.
Jacob, R, Pethick, D and Chapman, H 2005a. Muscle glycogen concentrations in commercial consignments of Australian lamb measured on farm and post-slaughter after three different lairage periods. Animal Production Science 45, 543552.
Jacob, R, Walker, P, Skerritt, J, Davidson, R, Hopkins, D, Thompson, J and Pethick, D 2005b. The effect of lairage time on consumer sensory scores of the M. longissimus thoracis et lumborum from lambs and lactating ewes. Animal Production Science 45, 535542.
Jacob, RH, Gardner, GE and Pethick, DW 2009. Repletion of glycogen in muscle is preceded by repletion of glycogen in the liver of Merino hoggets. Animal Production Science 49, 131138.
Kirton, A, Clarke, J and Carter, A 1967. Effect of pre-slaughter fasting on liveweight, carcass weight, and carcass composition of Southdown ram lambs. New Zealand Journal of Agricultural Research 10, 4355.
Kirton, A, Quartermain, A, Uljee, A, Carter, W and Pickering, F 1968. Effect of 1 and 2 days’ ante-mortem fasting on live weight and carcass losses in lambs. New Zealand Journal of Agricultural Research 11, 891902.
Martin, K, McGilchrist, P, Thompson, J and Gardner, G 2011. Progeny of high muscling sires have reduced muscle response to adrenaline in sheep. Animal 5, 10601070.
McGilchrist, P, Pethick, DW, Bonny, SPF, Greenwood, PL and Gardner, GE 2011. Beef cattle selected for increased muscularity have a reduced muscle response and increased adipose tissue response to adrenaline. Animal 5, 875884.
Pearce, KL, van de Ven, R, Mudford, C, Warner, RD, Hocking-Edwards, J, Jacob, R, Pethick, DW and Hopkins, DL 2010. Case studies demonstrating the benefits on pH and temperature decline of optimising medium-voltage electrical stimulation of lamb carcasses. Animal Production Science 50, 11071114.
Perry, D, Shorthose, WR, Ferguson, DM and Thompson, JM 2001. Methods used in the CRC program for the determination of carcass yield and beef quality. Australian Journal of Experimental Agriculture 41, 953957.
Pethick, D 1993. Carbohydrate and lipid oxidation during exercise. Australian Journal of Agricultural Research 44, 431441.
Pethick, D, Harper, G and Dunshea, F 2005. Fat metabolism and turnover. In quantitative aspects of ruminant digestion and metabolism (ed. JM Forbes and J Dijkstra), pp. 345371. CAB International, Wallingford, UK.
Pointon, A, Kiermeier, A and Fegan, N 2012. Review of the impact of pre-slaughter feed curfews of cattle, sheep and goats on food safety and carcase hygiene in Australia. Food Control 26, 313321.
Stewart, SM, McGilchrist, P, Gardner, GE and Pethick, DW 2014. Concentrations of NEFA, lactate and glucose in lambs are different to cattle at slaughter. In Proceedings of the 65th Annual Meeting of the European Association of Animal Production, 25–28 August 2014, Copenhagen, Denmark, pp. 228.
Stewart, SM, McGilchrist, P, Gardner, GE and Pethick, DW 2018. Feed deprivation in Merino, and Terminal sired lambs (1) The metabolic effect under resting conditions. Animal, https://doi.org/10.1017/S1751731118002975.
Tarrant, P 1989. Animal behaviour and environment in the dark-cutting condition in beef-a review. Irish Journal of Food Science and Technology 13, 121.
Thompson, JM, O’Halloran, WJ, McNeill, DMJ, Jackson-Hope, NJ and May, TJ 1987. The effect of fasting on live weight and carcass characteristics in lambs. Meat Science 20, 293309.
Toohey, E and Hopkins, D 2006. Effects of lairage time and electrical stimulation on sheep meat quality. Animal Production Science 46, 863867.
van de Werf, JHJ, Kinghorn, B and Banks, RG 2010. Design and role of an information nucleus in sheep breeding programs. Animal Production Science 50, 9981003.
Warriss, P, Bevis, E, Brown, S and Ashby, J 1989. An examination of potential indices of fasting time in commercially slaughtered sheep. British Veterinary Journal 145, 242248.
Warriss, PD, Brown, SN, Bevis, EA, Kestin, SC and Young, CS 1987. Influence of food withdrawal at various times pre-slaughter on carcass yield and meat quality in sheep. Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture 39, 325334.

Keywords

Feed deprivation in Merino and Terminal sired lambs: (2) the metabolic response under pre-slaughter conditions and impact on meat quality and carcass yield

  • S. M. Stewart (a1), P. McGilchrist (a2), G. E. Gardner (a1) and D. W. Pethick (a1)

Metrics

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed