An objective appraisal system for intact lamb and mutton carcasses utilizing a fleshing index to relate carcass weight and length is presented. Gross fleshing index is defined as the number of pounds by which any carcass is heavier or lighter than the average carcass of its particular length. Penalty for overfatness is made when necessary by an estimation technique involving measurement of fat status at the level of the first lumbar vertebra on the intact carcass with the aid of a steel probe. The net fleshing index, a simple numerical expression of carcass fleshing, is arrived at by deducting the penalty for overfatness (when necessary) from the gross fleshing index. The greater the net fleshing index the greater the relative merit of the carcass.