Awareness of food quality has increased considerably amongst consumers for a number of reasons. These include concern over agrochemioal residues and eating quality. Food produced to organic standards is claimed to be of intrinsically better quality than conventionally produced food. Apart from the likelihood of reduced agrochemical residues, it is also suggested that organic food tastes better. Livestock diets are known to influence the taste of meat and milk products (Younie et al 1988). The experiment described here was initiated to determine whether beef produced organically had different flavour characteristics from conventionally produced beef.
Beef samples were obtained from two groups of Hereford x Frieslan steers born in autumn 1987, reared within the framework of an 18 month beef system and finished in early 1989.